Friday, 25 April 2014

30% of children entering hospital threatened by malnutrition

4 October 2012

Prague, Oct 3 (CTK) - Thirty percent of children entering hospital are threatened by malnutrition, according to a survey by the Nutricia company in cooperation with the Czech Pediatric Society released to CTK Wednesday.

These children do not suffer from hunger, however, when they are ill they need up to two times more nutrients than normally, the authors of the survey said.

In one-third of the cases of a malnutrition risk, the children vomited or had diarrhoea.

Especially children suffering from troubles related to their respiratory or digestive system are threatened because their recovery and treatment may last longer if they do not have enough nutrients.

The survey was conducted on nearly 3000 children from 35 Czech hospitals.

Nutricia is a healthcare division of the food company Danone, focusing on patients and people for whom a normal diet is not sufficient or possible.

Jiri Bronsky, from the Prague-Motol teaching hospital, said the risk of malnutrition was high in 2 percent of the hospitalised children.

"Insufficient nutrition is very often identified with the problem of hunger. But this is misleading because any children in the modern society may suffer from malnutrition, including obese children," said Oldrich Pozler, from the teaching hospital in Hradec Kralove, east Bohemia.

The survey recommended to hospitals that they include an assessment of a possible risk of malnutrition into their standard care for the hospitalised children.

Moreover, parents should be more interested in the appropriate nutrition for their children during their treatment and convalescence.

When children's health risks are discussed, overweight is considered a markedly more serious issue in the Czech Republic. One out of five boys and one out of ten girls suffer from overweight or obesity. Most children with these problems have overweight parents, surveys indicated.

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