Clinical Science of Nutrition
Original Article

Malnutrition Prevalence Increased During the COVID-19 Pandemic in Patients with Dementia: A Retrospective Study from the Geriatric Outpatient Clinic


Department of Geriatrics, Hacettepe University Faculty of Medicine, Ankara, Turkey

Clin Sci Nutr 2022; 4: 14-19
DOI: 10.54614/ClinSciNutr.2022.2203027
Read: 564 Downloads: 278 Published: 29 April 2022

Objective: Individuals who are clinically vulnerable and older are more susceptible to severe consequences, either directly from the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) infection or indirectly from the rigorous social isolation policies. Increased frailty, reduced quality of life, high level of stress, and increased depressive symptoms were observed during the social isolation period. Patients with dementia are more vulnerable to the direct and indirect effects of COVID-19. In this study, we have explored the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on nutrition in patients with dementia who were followed up in our outpatient clinic.

Methods: Patients with a diagnosis of dementia who were followed up in the geriatric outpatient clinic at our university hospital were included in the study. The risk of malnutrition was evaluated using the Mini-Nutritional Assessment-Short Form (MNASF). An MNA-SF score between 8 and 11 was defined as risk of malnutrition, and scores < 8 were accepted as malnutrition. A retrospective study was performed using the identified electronic records of 121 patients who were admitted to the hospital between March 11, 2020, and March 31, 2021.

Results: The mean age of the study population was 80.12 ± 7.12 years, and 60.3% of the patients were female. The MNA-SF scores decreased and malnutrition prevalence increased as the dementia worsened, and the difference before and during the pandemic was statistically significant (P < .05).

Conclusion: For patients living with dementia, COVID-19 restrictions, particularly those related to social isolation like social distancing and lockdowns, might not only have mental and cognitive implications but also disturb their already vulnerable nutritional status.

Cite this article as: Güner Oytun M, Ceylan S, Öztürk Y, et al. Malnutrition prevalence increased during covid-19 pandemic in patients with dementia: a retrospective study from geriatric outpatient clinic. Clin Sci Nutr. 2022;4(1):14-19.

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