Submitted to: Journal of the American Geriatrics Society
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 2/7/2011
Publication Date: 5/11/2011
Citation: Liu, C., Leng, I., Kritchevsky, S., Ding, J., Earnest, C., Ferrucci, L., Goodpaster, B., Guralnik, J., Hsu, F., Lenchick, L., Fielding, R.A. 2011. The impact of sarcopenia on the response to a physical activity intervention in older adults. Journal of the American Geriatrics Society. Control ID: 1025329. Interpretive Summary:
Technical Abstract: To determine if the changes observed in the Short Physical Performance Battery (SPPB) after a physical activity or health education intervention are influenced by sarcopenia status at baseline. Data were obtained from the Lifestyles for Interventions and Independence for Elders Pilot Study, a RCT that examined the effect of a 1 year physical activity intervention compared to a health education program on physical performance measures in older adults at high risk for future disability. At enrollment dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry was performed and the presence of sarcopenia was determined by two methods: 1. calculation of ALM/ht**2: subjects were sarcopenic if appendicular lean mass (ALM or lean mass of all extremities) adjusted for height was less than or equal to 5.45 kg/m**2 for women or less than or equal to 7.26 kg/m**2 for men 2. Calculation of residual value: subjects were sarcopenic if ALM adjusted for height and fat mass was in the lowest gender-specific quintile (20%). Primary outcome measured was SPPB score. The sample consisted of 177 older adults. 71% of the subjects were female and the mean age was 77.7+/-4.0 years. Mean BMI was 29.2+/-5.8 kg/m**2, and 78% were white. Mean SPPB score at entry was 7.7+/-1.3. 89 subjects were in the intervention arm and 88 subjects were in the control arm. 11.3% and 18.6% of the subjects were sarcopenic at baseline by the ALM/ht**2 and residuals methods, respectively. At 1 year follow-up, sarcopenic subjects tended to have a larger mean improvement in SPPB score compared to non-sarcopenic subjects, regardless of intervention arm. Although this finding was limited by sample size, this trend persisted with use of either the ALM/ht**2 or residuals method. These results suggest that sarcopenic older adults may gain a greater benefit from physical activity or health education when compared to their non-sarcopenic counterparts.