E46: Unspecified protein-energy malnutrition

You are lacking food or certain nutritional components.

Your body needs food in order to have enough energy, grow and stay healthy. Food is made up of various ingredients. For example, the body needs proteins to build up muscles and to be able to work properly. If you do not have enough food or individual nutritional components, you may lose weight and become emaciated. You may then weigh less than is normal for your height. If you have too few proteins in your body, fluid may accumulate in your face or stomach. Due to the excess fluid, it is also possible that you have a normal weight.

There can be various reasons why someone lacks food or proteins. For example, it may be the case that you are eating too little. But sometimes you may not be able to absorb food or proteins as well due to another disease. It is also possible that you need more food or proteins than normal because of a disease.

Additional indicator

On medical documents, the ICD code is often appended by letters that indicate the diagnostic certainty or the affected side of the body.

  • G: Confirmed diagnosis
  • V: Tentative diagnosis
  • Z: Condition after
  • A: Excluded diagnosis
  • L: Left
  • R: Right
  • B: Both sides

Further information


This information is not intended for self-diagnosis and does not replace professional medical advice from a doctor. If you find an ICD code on a personal medical document, please also note the additional indicator used for diagnostic confidence.
Your doctor will assist you with any health-related questions and explain the ICD diagnosis code to you in a direct consultation if necessary.


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