What is Iatrogenic Malnutrition?
Malnutrition basically means poor nutrition. It may be an excess of important nutrients in the body or it may also refer to the lack thereof. Usual causes of malnutrition involve poor eating habits with either too much or too little intake of the essential nutrients the body needs. Many people from poor countries have limited access to food and so become severely malnourished. But not all forms of malnutrition can be attributed to bad eating habits or limited access to food. Malnutrition may also result from iatrogenesis which basically points to medical causes. This type of malnutrition is called iatrogenic malnutrition and this condition could either be an effect of various medications or some complication to medical treatment or procedure.
Iatrogenic malnutrition may also be caused by negligence among medical personnel including doctors, nurses, therapists, or caregivers who are attending to a particular patient. Or it could be just an unfortunate side effect of some forms of medication or treatment procedure. Some drugs are known to have interactions with other drugs and cause adverse effects on various nutrients in the body and so medical personnel should monitor patients under their care. In some instances, some patients do not respond properly to their medication secondary to resistance and/or overuse. Depletion of nutrients in the body may also result from errors made by medical personnel especially in giving the wrong prescription or medication. Some medical procedures may also be administered wrongly which could also lead to the iatrogenic form of malnutrition.
Either way, whether a particular patient suffers from malnutrition secondary to lack or excess food and/or iatrogenic means, he/she deserves to be given immediate medical care. For those providing medical services, utmost care must be taken in order to prevent patients from having iatrogenic malnutrition. In most cases, the service of nutrition experts is essential in restoring normal nutrition levels of patients who are under medical care.