Malnutrition in Older Adults-Effect on Falls and Fractures: A Narrative Review

Nutrients. 2022 Jul 29;14(15):3123. doi: 10.3390/nu14153123.


Malnutrition in older adults impacts health status, increased mortality, and morbidity. Malnutrition may increase the development of geriatric syndromes and contribute to a higher prevalence of falls and osteoporotic fractures that lead to loss of independence and an increased rate of institutionalization. The role of malnutrition in the pathogenesis of other geriatric syndromes seems to be well established. However, the data concerning nutritional interventions are confounding. Moreover, long-term undernutrition seems to be one of the factors that strongly influences the efficacy of interventions. This review outlines the current literature on this topic, and aims to guide physicians to make proper decisions to prevent the vicious cycle of falls, fractures, and their negative outcomes in patients with malnutrition.

Keywords: falls; fracture risk; functional decline; immobility; malnutrition; older adults.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Fractures, Bone* / epidemiology
  • Fractures, Bone* / etiology
  • Geriatric Assessment
  • Humans
  • Institutionalization
  • Malnutrition* / complications
  • Malnutrition* / epidemiology
  • Malnutrition* / prevention & control
  • Nutritional Status
  • Prevalence
  • Syndrome

Grants and funding

This research received no external funding.