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Am J Clin Nutr. 1982 Jul;36(1):172-7.

Assessment of abdominal fat content by computed tomography.

Abstract

Computed tomography (CT) produces thin cross-sectional radiographs that may prove very useful in body composition research. CT images of the abdomen allow computerized measurement of total fat area, and also enable the differentiation of subcutaneous fat from intraabdominal fat. The preset investigation examines whether a single CT scan of the abdomen provides an accurate indication of overall abdominal adiposity. Graphs of measurements from seven sequential scans of the abdomen in eight patients showed that rankings of total abdominal area, total fat area, subcutaneous and intraabdominal fat area are relatively consistent no matter which abdominal level is chosen. Correlations of 0.89 to 0.99 between single scans and the average values for all scans show that a single CT image contains the same information on adiposity as a series of scans. These results suggest that future CT studies of body composition can limit radiation exposure by using single scans at different anatomical sites. If only a single scan at one site can be obtained, the level of the umbilicus may be the most useful, because it contains the largest percentage of fat in the body, and best allows differentiation of intraabdominal from subcutaneous fat.

PMID:
7091027
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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