Nutritional risk in hospitalised children: An assessment of two instruments
Ling RE., Hedges V., Sullivan PB.
Background & aims: A child's nutritional status may deteriorate over the course of a hospital admission. No universally accepted paediatric nutritional screening tool exists. This study aimed to evaluate validity and ease of use of two new instruments, STAMP and STRONGKIDS, for the assessment of nutritional risk of paediatric inpatients. Methods: In a cross-sectional study two trained investigators applied STAMP and STRONGKIDSto eligible inpatients. Demographic data, clinical information and anthropometric measurements were recorded. Correlation of assessed risk and two factors predictive of nutritional risk, anthropometric nutritional status and presence of nutritional intervention, were used to evaluate validity of the instruments. Results: The 43 children assessed by STAMP and STRONGKIDS, were assessed as: STAMP: 44% high risk, 28% medium risk and 28% low risk and STRONGKIDS: 27% high risk, 49% medium risk and 24% low risk. STAMP scores correlated to anthropometric measures of chronic undernutrition (height-for-age) but not measures of acute undernutrition (BMI). STRONGKIDScorrelated to all anthropometric measures. For STAMP and STRONGKIDS, 57% and 83% of high risk children respectively, received nutritional intervention. Conclusions: In terms of validity, STAMP correlates less closely to anthropometric assessment of nutritional status and identifies considerably more children receiving no nutritional intervention as high risk than STRONGKIDS. Our results suggest that STRONGKIDSmay be a more useful paediatric nutritional screening tool but further comparative studies are required. © 2011 European Society for Clinical Nutrition and Metabolism.