Sarcopenia and sarcopenic obesity in Northern Bavaria

Journal: Osteologie
ISSN: 1019-1291

Kalzium-Phosphat-Stoffwechsel und Knochen

Issue: Issues of 2017 (Vol. 26): HeIssue 3 2017 (131-191)
Pages: 164-170

Sarcopenia and sarcopenic obesity in Northern Bavaria

Impact of different assessment protocols on prevalence rate

W. Kemmler (1), S. von Stengel (1)

(1) Institut für Medizinische Physik, Friedrich-Alexander Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg, Erlangen


prevalence, Low muscle mass, high fat content, older men


Aim: Due to current demographic trends Sarcopenia and Sarcopenic Obesity (SO) is becoming increasingly important for our fast aging societies. Indeed, the synergistic negative effect of decreased muscle mass combined with increased fat mass may be the most prominent component of disability, frailty and morbidity in older people. However, with respect to varying definitions, components and cut-off points it is difficult to determine the prevalence of both “conditions” in a given population. The aim of the study was thus to determine the prevalence of Sarcopenia und Sarcopenic Obesity in community-dwelling caucasian men 70+ from Northern Bavaria and to determine the inherent variation of the European Working Group on Sarcopenia in Older People (EWGSOP) definition using varying approaches, cut-off points and test protocols. Material and methods: Nine hundred sixty-five (965) community-dwelling caucasian men 70+ living in the area of Erlangen-Nürnberg, Northern Bavaria, Germany, were included into the project. Prevalence of sarcopenia was diagnosed using the definition of the EWGSOP and applying the T-Score based method. Obesity was determined using body-fat-based approaches with a cut-off point of 28 % as applied for the present calculation. Different EWGSOP based suggestions for the diagnosis of low muscle mass along with varying cut-points for body-fat were calculated and compared. In parallel, different methods to evaluate functional Sarcopenia parameters were applied to estimate the variation within the EWGSOP definition from applying different approaches. Results: Using the up to date most frequently applied EWGSOP valuation, amongst the present cohort 5.1 % were classified as sarcopenic, the corresponding SO prevalence was 3.8 %. However, using different methods to calculate the EWGSOP approach, prevalence for sarcopenia varied between 0.9 % and 6.0 %, the corresponding range for SO varied between 0.5 % and 4.1 %. Discussion: The prevalence of sarcopenia in this German cohort of community-dwelling caucasian men 70 years and older was slightly higher compared with European neighborhood countries that also applied the EWGSOP definition. Although we failed to detect comparable approaches to determine SO in caucasian cohorts this could be expected for SO too. Potentially this could be due to our rather cautious approach within the testing strategy. Indeed, the variation when applying different methods, cut-off points and testing strategy either prescribed or even not addressed by the EWGSOP was higher compared with the application of different Sarcopenia definitions than determined by comparable methods and testing strategies. Our finding clearly underscores the need for a standardized diagnose protocol that not only addresses Sarcopenia components, cut-off points and algorithms but also prescribes a consistent testing strategy. Since Sarcopenia is now included in the ICD-10 (M62.84), which will further increase the relevance of this “disease”, this process should be tackled in the near future. Trial registration: NCT2857660

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