HealthDay News — Patients with acute coronary syndrome (ACS) often have malnutrition, which is associated with increased risk for mortality and major adverse cardiovascular events (MACEs), according to a study published in the Aug. 18 issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

Sergio Raposeiras Roubín, M.D., Ph.D., from University Hospital Álvaro Cunqueiro in Vigo, Spain, and colleagues examined the prevalence, clinical associations, and prognostic consequences of malnutrition in a cohort of 5,062 patients with ACS.

The researchers found that 11.2, 39.5, and 8.9 percent of patients were moderately or severely malnourished according to the Controlling Nutritional Status (CONUT) score, the Nutritional Risk Index (NRI), and the Prognostic Nutritional Index (PNI), respectively; 71.8 percent were at least mildly malnourished by at least one score. Worse scores were most strongly linked to lower body mass index, however, 8.4 to 36.7 percent of patients with a body mass index of ≥25 kg/m² were moderately or strongly malnourished. During a median 3.6 years of follow-up, 16.4 percent of patients died and 20.7 percent had MACEs. Malnutrition was associated with significantly increased risk for all-cause death compared with good nutritional status (adjusted hazard ratio for moderate and severe malnutrition: 2.02 and 3.65 for CONUT score; 1.40 and 2.87 for the NRI; and 1.71 and 1.95 for PNI). Similar results for MACEs were seen for CONUT and PNI scores.

“Malnutrition assessment could allow clinicians to identify patients with ACS at elevated risk for mortality and future cardiovascular events,” the authors write.

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