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Subjective global nutritional assessment [SGNA] in children on chronic dialysis- A prospective observational study

 Departments of Pediatric Nephrology and Biostatistics, St John's National Academy of Health Sciences, Bangalore, Karnataka, India

Correspondence Address:
Arpana Iyengar,
Department of Pediatric Nephrology, St John's National Academy of Health Sciences, Bangalore, Karnataka - 560 034
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ijn.ijn_340_21

Introduction: Nutritional assessment in children undergoing chronic dialysis is challenging as no single objective reference tool is available. There is a need to explore the application of the subjective global nutritional assessment (SGNA) tool in these children. This study assessed the nutritional status of children on chronic dialysis using SGNA, evaluated the utility of SGNA parameters in the longitudinal assessment of nutrition, and compared the SGNA tool with other nutritional measures. Methods: Children 2-18 years of age on chronic dialysis for at least 1 month were prospectively studied over a period of 18 months with two follow-up visits at least 3 months apart. Malnutrition was diagnosed by SGNA (well-nourished, moderately, and severely malnourished), mid-arm circumference <5th centile for age and gender, and serum albumin <3.8 g/l at baseline and follow-up. Results: In 41 children on dialysis (age: 124.8 ± 32 months), 73% had moderate or severe malnutrition by SGNA. Height for age (P = 0.008), weight for height (P = 0.004), dietary intake (P = 0.025) functional capacity (P = 0.001), loss of subcutaneous fat (P < 0.001), and muscle wasting (P < 0.001) were significantly associated with the presence and severity of malnutrition. SGNA showed a poor agreement with MUAC and serum albumin. On follow-up, there was no significant change in the category of nutritional status (P = 0.63) and no individual SGNA parameter was associated with the presence or severity of malnutrition. Conclusion: Two-thirds of the children on chronic dialysis were diagnosed with moderate to severe malnutrition by SGNA, while the majority remained in the same category of nutritional status on follow-up. Only half of the parameters used for assessment were strongly associated with the presence and severity of malnutrition. SGNA showed a poor agreement with objective nutritional measures and was not responsive in identifying a change in the nutritional status on follow-up.

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    -  Iyengar A
    -  Ashok JM
    -  Vasudevan A
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Indian Journal of Nephrology
Published by Wolters Kluwer - Medknow
Online since 20th Sept '07