Prevalence and consequences of malnutrition and malnourishment in older individuals admitted to hospital with a hip fracture

Thang S Han*, Keefai Yeong, Radcliffe Lisk, David Fluck, Chris H Fry

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

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BACKGROUND/OBJECTIVES: Major causes of hip fractures are osteoporosis and falls, both of which are determined by nutrition. Information on the nutritional status of patients admitted to hospital with a hip fracture is lacking. In this study, we assessed determinants and adverse outcomes associated with malnutrition and malnourishment. 
METHODS: Nutritional status, assessed using the Malnutrition Universal Screening Tool protocol, was compared to age and residency prior to admission, and outcomes during hospital stay and at discharge. 
RESULTS: A total of 1239 patients admitted with a hip fracture (349 men, 890 33 women), aged 60-100yr. Compared with well-nourished individuals, the prevalences of malnutrition risk or malnourishment were higher in older age groups and those from residential or nursing care. Those with risk of malnutrition or malnourishment stayed in hospital longer by 3.0 days (95% confidence interval (CI), 1.5-4.5 days; 37 p<0.001) and 3.1 days (95%CI, 0.7-5.5 days; p=0.011), respectively. Compared with the well-nourished group, malnourished individuals had increased: i) risk for failure to mobilise within 1-day of surgery (rates=17.9 versus 27.0%; odds ratio (OR)=1.6 (95%CI, 1.0-2.7), p=0.045); ii) pressure ulcers (rates=1.0% versus 5.0%; OR= 5.5 (95%CI, 1.8-17.1), p=0.006; iii) in-patient mortality (rates=4.5% versus 10.1%; OR=2.3 (95%CI, 1.1-4.8) p=0.033 and iv) discharge to residential/nursing care: rates=4.3% versus 11.1%; OR=2.8 (95%CI, 1.2-6.6), p=0.022.
CONCLUSIONS: Inadequate nutrition is common in patients admitted to hospital with a hip fracture, which in turn predisposes them to a number of complications. More research on nutritional support should be directed to this group to prevent or minimise hip fractures.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages8
JournalEuropean Journal of Clinical Nutrition
Early online date7 Oct 2020
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 7 Oct 2020


  • discharge planning
  • geriatrics;
  • healthcare;
  • length of stay in hospital
  • mortality;
  • nutritional status


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