Symposium Session: Lab Assessment of Nutritional Status: Bridging Theory and Practice
Suggested CDR Learning Codes: 3000, 3010, 3060, 5010
Suggested CDR Performance Indicators: 8.1.2, 8.1.3, 10.2.1, 10.2.3
Learn the latest on lab assessment as a predictor of nutritional status. Changes in laboratory values reflect changes in medical condition but not always nutritional status. Be alert to all the factors that contribute to changes in laboratory values. Look for physical signs and symptoms of nutrient deficiencies or toxicities to support your nutrition diagnoses. Changes in nutritional status often mean that either the plan of care is achieving the expected outcomes or it is not achieving the expected outcomes. Improving nutritional status usually means shorter hospital stays, fewer complications, and speedier wound healing after surgery. Using laboratory assessment to document the positive impact of MNT demonstrates the benefits of our professional expertise to the medical team.
Topics include hydration status, inflammatory biomarkers, nutrition-related anemia, micronutrient deficiencies, and risk markers for chronic diseases. Learn how to interpret commonly ordered labs and strengthen your critical thinking skills in nutrition assessment, as well as information needed to justify requests for lab tests.
After attending this session, nutrition professionals should be able to:
- Discuss the role of inflammatory biomarkers as they relate to declining nutritional status.
- Assess laboratory test results for hydration status, nutrition-related anemia, micronutrient deficiencies, and other nutrition-related disorders.
- Apply principles of the Nutrition Care Process in the laboratory assessment of nutritional status.
Mary Litchford, PhD, RDN, LDN, is an internationally recognized speaker, author, and consultant to health care providers. She is one the nation’s leading experts on clinical nutrition assessment, malnutrition, and aging. She is president of CASE Software & Books, a professional and educational resource company. Mary is known for her advanced-level lectures, workshops, and CE programs that challenge nutrition professionals to strengthen their critical thinking skills in nutrition assessment.
She received her PhD in human nutrition from the University of North Carolina-Greensboro. Her professional career has included clinical practice, university teaching, entrepreneurship, and business consulting. Her latest publication is Laboratory Assessment of Nutritional Status: Bridging Theory & Practice.
She is a member of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and served on the Academy's Evidence Analysis Library work groups on wound care and hydration. She is currently president of the National Pressure Ulcer Advisory Panel and serves as one of its representatives in the International Clinical Practice Guidelines Governance Group.
Mary Litchford reports the following relevant disclosures: she is a consultant to Prosynthesis and Medline Industries. She has certified that no conflict of interest exists for this program. View our disclosure policy.
- 1.50 CDR