Nutritional Support and the Surgical Patient

Yvonne Huckleberry


Am J Health Syst Pharm. 2004;61(7) 

In This Article

Subjective Global Assessment

Certain components of nutritional assessment have been combined into a clinical tool described as the subjective global assessment (SGA). SGA combines data from weight and dietary histories with physical examination observations to subjectively classify patients as well nourished, moderately malnourished, or severely malnourished ( Table ).[47,48,49] Like albumin, SGA has been shown to predict postoperative nutrition-related complications. In fact, combining the two variables has been recommended to increase the predictive ability over that of either method alone.[48] SGA is a fairly simple, inexpensive technique that can easily be taught to a variety of clinicians.[48,50,51] This method has been validated by studies suggesting correlation of its results in terms of nutritional status ranking compared with objective methods. Further, interobserver reproducibility has been demonstrated, with approximately 80% agreement between blinded practitioners assessing the same patient.[47,49] These characteristics make SGA an attractive tool for routine use in the nutritional assessment of surgical patients.


Comments on Medscape are moderated and should be professional in tone and on topic. You must declare any conflicts of interest related to your comments and responses. Please see our Commenting Guide for further information. We reserve the right to remove posts at our sole discretion.