Older patients with greater muscle mass and no malnutrition have higher survival rate

The Journal of Frailty & Aging published the article ‘Muscle Measures and Nutritional Status at Hospital Admission Predict Survival and Independent Living of Older Patients – the EMPOWER study.
Older people suffering from muscle loss and malnutrition have a higher risk of co-morbidities, hospitalization, institutionalization and mortality. The EMPOWER study showed that muscle mass and nutritional status are positively associated with the likelihood of survival of older patients in hospital.
Additionally, measures of muscle strength and functional performance showed a positive association with living independently three months after patients were discharged from the hospital.
Yvette Luiking: “What we see is that muscle mass and function are associated with differential important health outcomes. Targeted interventions in older patients in the hospital to address malnutrition and low muscle mass, as well as low muscle function, require further research on their health outcomes.”

The EMPOWER study is an observational and longitudinal study including 378 patients of 70 years and older, admitted to the VU University Medical Centre in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. Three months after patients left the hospital an interview by phone was held to assess survival rate, living situation and health status.