OBJECTIVES: To evaluate the effects of a short-term nutritional intervention with protein and vitamin D on falls in malnourished older adults.
DESIGN: Randomized controlled trial.
SETTING: From hospital admission until 3 months after discharge.
PARTICIPANTS: Malnourished older adults (≥ 60) newly admitted to an acute hospital (n = 210).
INTERVENTION: Participants were randomized to receive nutritional intervention (energy- and protein-enriched diet, oral nutritional supplements, calcium-vitamin D supplement, telephone counseling by a dietitian) for 3 months after discharge or usual care.
MEASUREMENTS: Number of participants who fell, fall incidents, serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D, and dietary intake. Measurements were performed on admission to hospital and 3 months after discharge.
RESULTS: Three months after discharge, 10 participants (10%) in the intervention group had fallen at least once, compared with 24 (23%) in the control group (hazard ratio = 0.41, 95% confidence interval (CI) = 0.19-0.86). There were 57 fall incidents (16 in the intervention group; 41 in the control group). A significantly higher intake of energy (280 kcal, 95% CI = 37-524 kcal) and protein (11 g, 95% CI = 1-25 g) and significantly higher serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D levels (10.9 nmol/L, 95% CI = 2.9-18.9 nmol/L) were found in participants in the intervention group than in controls.
CONCLUSION: A short-term nutritional intervention consisting of oral nutritional supplements and calcium and vitamin D supplementation and supported by dietetic counseling in malnourished older adults decreases the number of patients who fall and fall incidents.
- Accidental Falls
- Administration, Oral
- Dietary Proteins
- Dietary Supplements
- Follow-Up Studies
- Fractures, Bone
- Middle Aged
- Nutrition Therapy
- Time Factors
- Treatment Outcome
- United States
- Vitamin D
- Comparative Study
- Journal Article
- Randomized Controlled Trial
- Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't