C & C Drugs: Nutrition therapy improves outcomes for patients – LIVING WELL Magazine

Nutrition Therapy Improves Outcomes for Many Patients

By Rhonda Landry, C & C Drugs, Northshore LIVING WELL Magazine

We all need food to live. But sometimes a person cannot eat any or enough food due to illness or injury. For some, the stomach or bowel may not be working quite right or they may have had surgery to remove all or part of these organs. Others may have a decreased appetite or difficulty in swallowing due to illness or treatment.

When this occurs, nutrition must be supplied in a different way. People of all ages, from infants to adults, can be given nutrition therapy. Many times it is only used for a short time until the person can begin to eat normally again, but can be used for as long as needed.

Enteral nutrition therapy (commonly known as tube feeding) is a generally safe and cost effective way to provide needed nutrition. The amount, type, and route of nutrition are tailored specifically to each patient with the goal being to improve patient outcomes and allow patients to live their lives as normally as possible.

For instance, you or someone you know may have cancer. One in three adults will develop some form of cancer in their lifetime. Cancer and its treatment can impact a patient’s nutritional status in a number of ways. Some of the adverse effects associated with chemotherapy and radiation therapy include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, decreased ability to digest food, and alterations in smell and taste.

Malnutrition affects from 40 to 80% of cancer patients and can significantly impact treatment and recovery. Even a 5% loss in body weight can negatively affect a patient’s response to treatment.

Enteral nutrition therapy has also been shown to induce clinical remission and reduce inflammation in patients with Crohn’s disease with minimal side effects. Nutrition therapy may also benefit patients with other inflammatory bowel diseases: liver disease, pancreatitis, short bowel syndrome, COPD, stroke, cardiac disease, and many other chronic or acute illnesses.  Benefits include less frequent and shorter hospital stays, fewer infections, lower mortality rates, and decreased use of medication in some patients.

To learn more about nutrition therapy, contact C and C Drugs Vital Care in Mandeville at 985-626-0234.