Validity of the Malnutrition Universal Screening Tool for Evaluation of Frailty Status in Older Hospitalised Patients

Yogesh Sharma, Peter Avina, Emelie Ross, Chris Horwood, Paul Hakendorf, Campbell Thompson

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1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

The malnutrition-universal-screening-tool (MUST) is commonly used for screening malnutrition in hospitalised patients but its utility in the detection of frailty is unknown. This study determined the utility of MUST in detection of frailty in older hospitalised patients. This prospective-study enrolled 243 patients ⩾65 years in a tertiary-teaching hospital in Australia. Patients with a MUST score of ⩾1 were classified as at-risk of malnutrition. Frailty status was determined by the Edmonton-Frail-Scale (EFS) and patients with an EFS score of >8 were classified as frail. We validated the MUST against the EFS by plotting a receiver-operating-characteristic-curve (ROC) curve and area-under-the-curve (AUC) was determined. The mean (SD) age was 83.9 (6.5) years and 126 (51.8%) were females. The EFS determined 149 (61.3%) patients as frail, while 107 (44.1%) patients were at-risk of malnutrition according to the MUST. There was a positive linear but weak association between the MUST and the EFS scores (Pearson’s correlation coefficient=.22, 95% CI.12–.36, p <.001). The sensitivity, specificity, positive and negative predictive value of MUST in the detection of frailty was 51%, 67%, 78.5% and 37%, respectively and the AUC was.59 (95% CI.53–.65, p <.001). The MUST is moderately sensitive in detection of frailty in older-hospitalised patients.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-8
Number of pages8
JournalGerontology and Geriatric Medicine
Volume8
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 6 Jul 2022

Keywords

  • aging
  • frailty
  • health services research
  • clinical geriatrics
  • observational study
  • gerontology

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