Behavioral and Cognitive Problems as Determinants of Malnutrition in Long-Term Care Facilities, a Cross-Sectional and Prospective Study

TitleBehavioral and Cognitive Problems as Determinants of Malnutrition in Long-Term Care Facilities, a Cross-Sectional and Prospective Study
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2022
AuthorsBorkent J.W, van Hout H.PJ, Feskens E.JM, Naumann E., de van der Schueren M.AE
JournalJournal of Nutrition, Health and Aging
Keywords*aggression, *cognitive defect, *Malnutrition/ep [Epidemiology], *nursing home, *problem behavior, *prospective study, Aged, aggressive behavior scale, article, behavior assessment, Cognition, cognitive performance scale, cohort analysis, communication disorder, Communication Scale, Comorbidity, controlled study, cross-sectional study, depression, depression assessment, depression rating scale, disease association, Female, follow up, Human, major clinical study, Male, mental performance, nursing home patient, Nutritional Status, Revised Index of Social Engagement, Social Behavior, very elderly

Objectives: To investigate the cross-sectional and prospective associations between behavior and cognitive problems and malnutrition in long-term care facilities (LTCF). Design(s): Cross-sectional and prospective routine care cohort study. Setting(s): 6874 Residents in Dutch LTCFs (period 2005-2020). Participant(s): Data were obtained from the InterRAI-LTCF instrument. Cross-sectional analyses on prevalence of malnutrition at admission included 3722 residents. Prospective analyses studied incident malnutrition during stay (total follow-up time 7104 years) and included data of 1826 residents with first measurement on admission ('newly-admitted') and n=3152 with first measurement on average ~1 year after admission ('existing'). Measurements: InterRAI scales for communication problems (CS), aggressive behavior (ABS), social engagement (RISE), depressive symptoms (DRS), cognitive performance (CPS) and the total number of behavior and cognitive problems were investigated as independent variables and malnutrition (ESPEN 2015 definition) as dependent variable in regression analyses. Results were stratified for gender and group 'newly-admitted' vs. 'existing'. Result(s): On admission, 9.5% of residents was malnourished. In men, low social engagement was associated with prevalence of malnutrition. In women, all behavior and cognitive problems except depression were associated with malnutrition in the unadjusted analyses, but this attenuated in the full model taking all problems into account. The incidence of malnutrition during stay amounted to 8.9%. No significant associations of behavior and cognitive problems with malnutrition incidence were seen in 'newly-admitted' male residents while in 'existing' male residents all determinants were significantly associated. In 'newly-admitted' female residents CS, ABS and CPS, and in 'existing' female residents CS, RISE, ABS and CPS were significantly associated with incident malnutrition. All associations slightly attenuated after adjustment. Malnutrition incidence increased with increasing number of combined behavior and cognitive problems. Conclusion(s): Residents with behavior and cognitive problems are at an increased risk of being malnourished at admission, or becoming malnourished during stay in a LTCF, especially residents with multiple behavior and cognitive problems.Copyright © 2022, The Author(s).