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Correlation of the mini-nutritional assessment and the tinetti gait and balance scores among older patients.


Eliza Mei P. Francisco,
Eduardo Rommel S. Poblete,
Miguel A. Ramos Jr,
Rosary M. Amane

Related Institution

Iloilo Mission Hospital

Publication Information

Publication Type
Publication Sub Type
Journal Article, Original
Philippine Journal of Internal Medicine
Six times a year (6x/year)
Publication Date
March-April 2007


BACKGROUND: Malnutrition is a frequent finding and problem in the elderly. It remains a largely unrecognized problem in the hospital. Hence multidimensional screening tools for nutritional assessment has been studied and developed. Among these, the Mini-Nutritional Assessment (MNA) was proven to be simple, non invasive, well validated screening tool for malnutrition in the elderly persons in Europe, United States and Japan. A large validation study is currently being conducted in China to look at its applicability to Asian Elderly population in general.

OBJECTIVES: To determine the correlation between the Mini-Nutritional Assessment (MNA) and Tinetti Gait and Balance scores among patients admitted at the St. Luke's Medical Center (Geriatric Center)

SETTING AND DESIGN: This is a retrospective, cross-sectional study conducted from May 1, 2005 to February 28, 2006 using the Mini-Nutritional Assessment (MNA) and Tinetti Gait and Balance Scores from the Comprehensive Geriatric Assessment (CGA) questionnaires.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: A total of 103 patients were admitted at the Acute Geriatric Ward. A Comprehensive Geriatric Assessment was conducted on each patient by the Geriatric Medicine Fellows assigned in the unit. The MNA and Tinetti Gait and Balance Scores of 72 patients included in the study were retrieved and recorded. Results were entered and analyzed using MINITAB. Selected characteristics of the geriatric patients were described using mean, standard deviation frequency and percentage. Inferential statistics included 2-sample t-test, oneway analysis of variance (ANOVA) and Pearson's correlation coefficient. Significance was determined by a p-value < 0.05.

RESULTS: The correlation coefficient was only 0.32. Although the strength of the positive relationship is not high, the correlation between the MNA and Tinetti Gait and Balance Scores is significant (p = 0.006).This suggests that a higher MNA score is associated with a higher Tinetti Gait and Balance score.

CONCLUSION: The Mini-Nutritional Assessment tool remains an important validated clinical tool to assess the nutritional status of the elderly. The study shows a tendency towards MNA's positive correlation with functionality and frailty. A larger population study in the future is needed . (Author)


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