Virtual Conference
Food Science 2023

Lora Chizmar

Orlando VA Healthcare System, United States of America

Title: Using Verbal Questions to Assess Physical Findings of Malnutrition


With telehealth on the rise, nutrition professionals are faced with the dilemma of how to virtually assess physical characteristics indicative of malnutrition. There is currently no validated set of questions whose answers are known to correspond with physical signs of malnutrition or a diagnosis of malnutrition. A pilot study performed at the James A. Haley Veterans’ Hospital in Tampa, Florida, USA compared verbal responses to 21 questions to findings from nutrition-focused physical exams. The results suggest that it is possible to develop questions that can be used to virtually assess signs of malnutrition, which may have an impact even beyond telehealth.


Lora Chizmar is currently working as a surgical dietitian at the Orlando VA Healthcare System in Florida, USA. She is heavily involved in developing protocols for the Orlando VA's Enhanced Recovery After Surgery program for colorectal surgery and helps to cover nutrition support team management. Lora originally trained at the James A Haley Veterans' Hospital in Tampa, Florida, USA where she performed the research for the two papers she has co-authored: "COVID-19 and micronutrient deficiency symptoms – is there some overlap?" and "A questionnaire for physical findings of malnutrition when physical exams are not possible."