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Clinical approach to the older person with anorexia

Tijdschriftbijdrage - Tijdschriftartikel

ObjectiveAnorexia is a challenging problem among older people. Apart from being the consequence of normal ageing, it can also be a symptom of underlying disease. Despite the high prevalence of anorexia, only few recommendations exist on the evaluation in older people. The objective of this study is to summarize evidence and provide guidance through creating a flowchart.MethodsA systematic literature search was performed through combining following keywords: older people (aged, geriatrics, older adult), anorexia (also loss of appetite, unintentional weight loss) and diagnosis. After removal of duplicates and case-reports, articles were selected based on title and abstract by two reviewers. Guidelines, reviews, studies and relevant publications discussing anorexia or unintentional weight loss were included. Relevant data were extracted and processed into a flowchart.ResultsOut of 619 hits, 25 articles were included discussing either the evaluation of anorexia or unintentional weight loss. Consensus in the work-up of unintentional weight loss is to start with a detailed history and physical examination followed by full bloodwork, urinalysis, chest x-ray and a faecal occult blood test. In certain cases, ultrasound and upper endoscopy are further recommended. In the work-up of anorexia, medication, social, psychological, logopaedic and neurocognitive aspects need to be taken into consideration.ConclusionsOne of the main challenges of the evaluation of anorexia in older people is the lack of guidance in existing literature. Therefore, we investigated what is currently known about the management of anorexia and unintentional weight loss as well and combined best practices to form a flowchart.
Tijdschrift: Acta clinica Belgica
ISSN: 1784-3286
Volume: 78
Pagina's: 486 - 496
Jaar van publicatie:2023
Trefwoorden:A1 Journal article