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Combating Dehydration in Nursing Homes

Combating Dehydration in Nursing Homes

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Published by djmchugh
In spite of existing hydration programs and best efforts in all nursing homes, it is estimated that on average approximately 30% of nursing home residents are technically in a state of dehydration. complications from that cost the average nursing home over $100,000 annually. This is a reprint of a trial using a balanced electrolyte oral hydration drink formula specifically designed for the geriatric population. eliminated hospitalizations and reduced UTI's by 45%.
In spite of existing hydration programs and best efforts in all nursing homes, it is estimated that on average approximately 30% of nursing home residents are technically in a state of dehydration. complications from that cost the average nursing home over $100,000 annually. This is a reprint of a trial using a balanced electrolyte oral hydration drink formula specifically designed for the geriatric population. eliminated hospitalizations and reduced UTI's by 45%.

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Published by: djmchugh on Mar 27, 2010
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12/11/2012

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DIETARY MANAGER
30
 
DIETARY MANAGER
30
Feature
 Article
dehydra
combating
and UTIs inLong-TermCare
by 
|
 Lisa Stewart, CDM, CFPP Helga Longino, RN Diane Burton, RN Angie Corder, RD
and UTIs inLong-TermCare
 
31
 
ion

billion per year. (Mentes)Burger and colleagues call the constellation of malnutri-tion, dehydration, and weight loss in nursing homes “one of the largest silent epidemics in this country.” (Burger et al.)They describe hospitalization as “a stressful event for frailelders.” Lack of simple nutrients can have a profound ef-fect on quality of life as well, noted Burger and colleagues:“Nursing home residents who do not receive adequate nu-trition and hydration during the last months or years of their lives are denied one of life’s greatest pleasures—theenjoyment of food and drink of their choice in a pleasantsocial environment.” (Burger et al.)
Defining the Risk
 What puts our aging population at risk for dehydration? A number of factors come into play:

body mass

thirds of nursing home residents, per research by Gasper)
Dehydration and urinary tract infections are all-too-common problems in long-term care. This article definessigns and symptoms of dehydration, and discusses astudy at one facility that tried a supplement to keepresidents hydrated and reduce UTIs.
(Continued on page 32)
Dehydration is a form of malnutrition 
involving life’s most fundamental nutrient: water. Dehydration is defined as—and often signaled by—a sudden loss of 3 percent or more of body  weight. (Weinberg et al.)
 Warren and colleagues define dehydration as “an imbal-ance between intake and loss of fluid and the accompany-ing sodium status.” They note that we tend to focus onfluid volume depletion because sodium status is not alwaysmeasured.Dehydration may take one of several forms (Huffman):

Isotonic
: balanced depletion of water and sodium,often seen with refusal of oral intake or as a result of diarrhea or vomiting

Hypertonic
: water losses are greater than sodiumlosses, often seen with fever 

Hypotonic
: proportionately greater sodium loss than water loss, as may occur with overuse of diureticsIn long-term care, the facts are alarming:

Medicare hospitalizations. (Warren et al.)

die within 30 days. (Warren et al.)

six times more likely to be hospitalized for dehydrationthan those aged 65 to 69. (Warren et al.)

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