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Review: protein and energy supplements reduce mortality and complications in undernourished elderly people in hospital

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Q Do protein and energy supplements improve clinical outcomes in elderly people?


Embedded ImageData sources:

Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (2005, issue 2); Medline (June 2005); EMBASE/Excerpta Medica, CINAHL, BIOSIS, and CAB abstracts (March 2004); HealthStar (March 2001); nutrition journals; reference lists of relevant articles; and manufacturers of nutritional supplements.

Embedded ImageStudy selection and assessment:

randomised and quasi-randomised controlled trials that evaluated use of an oral protein or energy supplement for ⩾1 week compared with placebo or control treatment in elderly people (average age ⩾65 y) in hospital, long term care, or the community. Randomised controlled trials (RCTs) involving patients in critical care or recovering from cancer treatment were excluded. 2 reviewers independently assessed …

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  • For correspondence: MsA C Milne, Health Services Research Unit, University of Aberdeen, Aberdeen, UK. a.c.milne{at}

  • Sources of funding: Medical Research Council; Scottish Executive Health Department; Student Awards Agency for Scotland.