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International Journal of Medical Research & Health Sciences (IJMRHS)
ISSN: 2319-5886 Indexed in: ESCI (Thomson Reuters)

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Abstract

Association of Geriatric Syndromes with Malnutrition Among Elderly

Author(s):Arun Srinivaasan Soundararajan, Anil Chankaramanagalam Mathew, Ramakrishnan Nanjuudan, and Alka Ganesh

Background: Malnutrition is a serious and frequent condition among older adults. However, older adults are poorly assessed for malnutrition although it is not an uncommon problem in this population. Age related decline in food intake, is associated with various psychological, physiological, and social problems. Aims: The study was aimed to conduct more comprehensive nutritional assessment tests among malnourished and among normal elders to assess other geriatric syndromes and to investigate the association of geriatric syndromes with malnutrition. Methods and Material: An earlier community survey was conducted at the urban field practice area of PSG Institute of Medical Sciences and Research, Coimbatore on 154 households and 190 elders aged 60 years and above were interviewed. Malnutrition was assessed using mini nutritional assessment test (MNA) in which 37 were found to be malnourished, 47 were found to be at risk of malnutrition and 106 were found to be normal. The present cross sectional study included 30 malnourished elders and 30 normal elders randomly selected from this population. The geriatric syndromes were assessed and compared between malnourished and normal. Results: It was observed that, the presence of visual disturbances (86.71% vs. 53.3% x2=7.937, P<0.01), dizziness, (60.0% vs. 16.7% x2=7.937, P<0.01), hearing loss (40.0% vs. 10.0% x2=7.200, P<0.01), dementia, (30.01% vs. 3.3% x2=7.680, P<0.01) and depression (60.0% vs.13.8% x2=13.464, P<0.01) were significantly higher in malnourished compared to normal elderly. The functional dependence mean + standard deviation (for GUGT (2.16+0.83 vs. 1.36+0.49 t=4.530 P<0.001 and Barthel index (83.50+12.18 vs. 90.66+6.91 t=2.801 P<0.01) were also significantly different between malnourished and normal elderly. Conclusion: The presence of various geriatric syndromes was significantly higher in malnourished elderly compared to normal. Thus, the interventional programs for malnutrition among elderly should also identify and address their geriatric syndromes.


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