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J Am Med Dir Assoc. 2013 Jul;14(7):493-8. doi: 10.1016/j.jamda.2013.02.001. Epub 2013 Mar 27.

Muscle strength rather than muscle mass is associated with standing balance in elderly outpatients.

Author information

1
Department of Internal Medicine, Section of Gerontology and Geriatrics, VU University Medical Center, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

Assessment of the association of muscle characteristics with standing balance is of special interest, as muscles are a target for potential intervention (ie, by strength training).

DESIGN:

Cross-sectional study.

SETTING:

Geriatric outpatient clinic.

PARTICIPANTS:

The study included 197 community-dwelling elderly outpatients (78 men, 119 women; mean age 82 years).

MEASUREMENTS:

Muscle characteristics included handgrip and knee extension strength, appendicular lean mass divided by height squared (ALM/height(2)), and lean mass as percentage of body mass. Two aspects of standing balance were assessed: the ability to maintain balance, and the quality of balance measured by Center of Pressure (CoP) movement during 10 seconds of side-by-side, semitandem, and tandem stance, with both eyes open and eyes closed. Logistic and linear regression models were adjusted for age, and additionally for height, body mass, cognitive function, and multimorbidity.

RESULTS:

Handgrip and knee extension strength, adjusted for age, were positively related to the ability to maintain balance with eyes open in side-by-side (P = .011; P = .043), semitandem (P = .005; P = .021), and tandem stance (P = .012; P = .014), and with eyes closed in side-by-side (P = .004; P = .004) and semitandem stance (not significant; P = .046). Additional adjustments affected the results only slightly. ALM/height(2) and lean mass percentage were not associated with the ability to maintain standing balance, except for an association between ALM/height(2) and tandem stance with eyes open (P = .033) that disappeared after additional adjustments. Muscle characteristics were not associated with CoP movement.

CONCLUSION:

Muscle strength rather than muscle mass was positively associated with the ability to maintain standing balance in elderly outpatients. Assessment of CoP movement was not of additional value.

PMID:
23540951
DOI:
10.1016/j.jamda.2013.02.001
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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