Nutritional status of elderlies admitted to home health care service
Objective: Undernutrition is common among the elderly. It is even more common in the older people taking home care compared to general population. In this study, it is aimed to examine nutritional status of elderly patients taking home-health care service and its relation with sociodemographic variables and laboratory parameters.
Methods: This cross-sectional study was carried out between August 2011 and September 2012 in home health care unit of Taksim Research and Training Hospital in Istanbul also providing home health care service to an elderly institute. For sociodemographic features health status and laboratoy parameters, the nationally standardized patient files have been used. Mini Nutritional Assesment test has been used for nutritional assessment and applied by the nurse or the doctor. Scores classified as normal nutrional state as risk for malnutrition between 17-23, and below 17 as malnutrition.
Results: A total of 89 elderly patients included in the study. Twelve (13.5%) were in normal nutritional status, 38.2% were at risk for malnutrition and 48.3% were malnourished. The presence of a wound/pressure ulcer, being bed-ridden, suffering from hypertension or cardiac insufficiency were significantly associated with malnutrition (p<0.05). Self-caring people were also at higher risk for malnutrition or were more malnourished (p<0.05). Total protein, albumin were significantly lower and CRP were significantly higher among the participants who were malnourished (p<0.05).
Conclusions: Malnutrition and risk of malnutrition are common among elderly patients taking home health care service. To assess the nutritional status of patients taking health care service at home and to intervene as it is needed will positively effect general health status, quality of life and complications of chronic diseases of these patients.