Prevalence of malnutrition and energy intake in hospitalized children

The main aim of the present study was to report the seven-year prevalence of malnutrition in a tertiary children’s hospital and toassess the diff erence between recommendations and actual intake in paediatric inpatients. The study included 606 patients, agerange from 0 months to 18 years, admitted to the Children’s Hospital Zagreb. Energy intake by all routes was assessed and comparedwith daily requirements recommended by the Croatian nutritional standard for hospital diets. Weight and height were measured,and body mass index (BMI) with standard deviation (SD) was calculated. Malnutrition was defi ned using the World Health Organization(WHO) cut-off BMI Z-score SD as the most widely used criteria. Overall, 28.6% of the study population were malnourished,including 19.7% of overweight and obese patients, 8.9% of undernourished patients and 6.9% of stunted patients. Study resultsshowed that 37% of all study patients had an average daily energy intake between 60% and 90%, and 33% above 90% of the recommendedvalues. In conclusion, the prevalence of malnutrition, including undernutrition and overnutrition, in hospitalized children inCroatia is similar to that in Europe. It is of great importance to identify the children at risk at an early stage, so that appropriatenutritional intervention can be introduced. A simple nutritional screening tool should be implemented and used in all childrenadmitted to the hospital. Key elements in improving dietary intake are a combination of screening, appropriate nutritional assessment,further patient monitoring, and improving the hospital menu.
Keywords: malnutrition, prevalence, energy intake, hospitalized children

Category: -> Uncategorised
Volume: Vol. 62, No 2, April - June 2018
Authors: Marinela Mamić, Petra Kučan, Diana Vukman, Tena Niseteo
Reference work: Paediatr Croat. 2018;62:74-80

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