The malnutrition universal screening tool (MUST) is designed to detect protein-energy malnutrition as well as those individuals at risk of developing malnutrition by using three independent criteria: current weight status, unintentional weight loss and acute disease effect . The patient's current body weight is determined by calculating the body mass index (BMI) (kg/m2). Weight loss (over the past 3-6 months) is determined by looking at the individual's medical record. An acute disease factor is then included if the patient is currently affected by a pathophysiological condition and there has been no nutritional intake for more than 5 days. A total score is calculated placing the patients in a low-, medium- or high-risk category for malnutrition (Table 1.6). A major advantage of this screening tool is its applicability to adults of all ages across all health care settings. Additionally, this method provides the user with management guidelines once an overall risk score has been determined. Studies have shown that MUST is quick and easy to use, and has good concurrent validity with most other nutrition assessment tools tested .
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Many women who have recently given birth are always interested in attempting to lose some of that extra weight that traditionally accompanies having a baby. What many of these women do not entirely realize is the fact that breast-feeding can not only help provide the baby with essential vitamins and nutrients, but can also help in the weight-loss process.