Malnutrition risk in hospitalized children: Use of 3 screening tools in a large European population

Michael Chourdakis, Christina Hecht, Konstantinos Gerasimidis, Koen F.M. Joosten, Thomais Karagiozoglou-Lampoudi, Harma A. Koetse, Janusz Ksiazyk, Cecilia Lazea, Raanan Shamir, Hania Szajewska, Berthold Koletzko*, Jessie M. Hulst

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Background: Several malnutrition screening tools have been advocated for use in pediatric inpatients. Objective: We evaluated how 3 popular pediatric nutrition screening tools [i.e., the Pediatric Yorkhill Malnutrition Score (PYMS), the Screening Tool for the Assessment of Malnutrition in Pediatrics (STAMP), and the Screening Tool for Risk of Impaired Nutritional Status and Growth (STRONGKIDS)] compared with and were related to anthropometric measures, body composition, and clinical variables in patients who were admitted to tertiary hospitals across Europe. Design: The 3 screening tools were applied in 2567 inpatients at 14 hospitals across 12 European countries. The classification of patients into different nutritional risk groups was compared between tools and related to anthropometric measures and clinical variables [e.g., length of hospital stay (LOS) and infection rates]. Results: A similar rate of completion of the screening tools for each tool was achieved (PYMS: 86%; STAMP: 84%; and STRONGKIDS: 81%). Risk classification differed markedly by tool, with an overall agreement of 41% between tools. Children categorized as high risk (PYMS: 25%; STAMP: 23%; and STRONGKIDS: 10%) had a longer LOS than that of children at low risk (1.4, 1.4, and 1.8 d longer, respectively; P , 0.001). In high-risk patients identified with the PYMS, 22% of them had low (,22) body mass index (BMI) SDscores (SDSs), and 8% of them had low height-for-age SDSs. For the STAMP, the percentages were 19% and 14%, respectively, and for the STRONGKIDS, the percentages were 23% and 19%, respectively. Conclusions: The identification and classification of malnutrition risk varied across the pediatric tools used. A considerable portion of children with subnormal anthropometric measures were not identified with all of the tools. The data obtained do not allow recommending the use of any of these screening tools for clinical practice. This study was registered at clinicaltrials.gov as NCT01132742.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1301-1310
Number of pages10
JournalAmerican Journal of Clinical Nutrition
Volume103
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 May 2016

Keywords

  • Hospitalized children
  • Malnutrition
  • Nutritional screening
  • PYMS
  • STAMP
  • STRONG

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