Last reviewed 01/2018

Important features include:

  • weight:
    • recent change with or without intention
    • indirect evidence e.g. loose clothes, comments by family members, old photographs
  • diet:
    • intake, both normal and recent change
    • components
    • consistency
    • frequency
  • energy output:
    • level of activity
    • fever
    • vomiting
    • diarrhoea
  • functional capacity for feeding e.g. disability resulting in difficulty with feeding. This is a broad spectrum, and should include obvious problems such as the loss of the use of an arm, and less obvious problems such as confusion.
  • gastrointestinal symptoms which might be affecting intake or efficient use of diet e.g. malabsorptive symptoms, pancreatic dysfunction
  • psychological symptoms or states altering intake / activity:
    • fear
    • anxiety
    • anorexia
  • general systemic symptoms possibly indicating an individual dietary deficiency:
    • lethargy
    • shortness of breath
    • failure of wound healing
  • chronic disease e.g. renal failure, diabetes
  • hypermetabolic states e.g. trauma and burns
  • malignancy