Clinical Nutrition
Lesson 3: Protein calorie malnutrition


Protein energy malnutrition is a problem that includes two distinctly different disease processes – kwashiorkor and marasmus. Protein energy malnutrition is defined as a range of pathological conditions arising from coincident lack of varying proportions of protein and calorie, occurring most frequently in infants and young children and often associated with infection. (WHO, 1973)

Previously it was considered a problem of the poorer populations, but now it is recognised that nearly 25 – 50 % of patients admitted into hospitals, who require hospitalization for two weeks or longer, suffer from PEM. Therefore it is important to identify and treat this problem.


Last modified: Wednesday, 2 November 2011, 9:45 AM