Subsyndromal delirium following surgery in older adults is related to increased lengths of hospital stay and increased admissions to long-term care. Impaired nutrition increases risk for delirium, but its relationship to subsyndromal delirium remains unclear.
This correlational study examined the relationship between nutritional status and subsyndromal delirium in older adults.
Assessments for subsyndromal delirium in 53 adults 65 years or older were completed for three consecutive days following joint replacement surgery. Relationships between nutritional status and subsyndromal delirium were analyzed. Level of significance for all tests was set at p ≤ .05.
Participants' scores from the Mini Nutritional Assessment screen were significantly related (p = .05) to subsyndromal delirium severity after accounting for variability posed by age and cognition status.
When preoperative risk assessment of older adults indicates nutritional risk, preoperative optimization may improve effectiveness of delirium prevention efforts.