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Ann Nutr Metab. 2014;64(2):113-21. doi: 10.1159/000356450. Epub 2014 Jul 2.

Bioimpedance in 7-year-old children: validation by dual X-ray absorptiometry - part 1: assessment of whole body composition.

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Institut d'Investigació Sanitària Pere Virgili, Universitat Rovira i Virgili, Reus, Spain.



To validate the bioimpedance analyzer (BIA) Tanita BC-418 for its clinical and epidemiological use in children compared to dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA).


A cross-sectional validation study was performed in 7-year-old children using anthropometry, BIA and DXA. Whole body fat and lean masses were assessed through BIA (BIAoutputs) and DXA. Fat mass index (FMI) was calculated. Predictive equations were derived from raw impedance and anthropometric measures; results obtained from these predictive equations (BIAregressions) were also compared to DXA.


171 children (84 boys) were studied. BIAoutputs and DXA results revealed small differences for lean mass (1%) and moderate differences for fat mass (13%). BIAregressions results showed small differences for both body lean and fat masses (0.21 and 4.62%, respectively). Sensitivity and specificity to correctly classify children >90.8th percentile of FMI was 84.6 (64.3-94.9) and 95.9% (90.8-98.3) for BIAoutputs and 100 (98.1-100.0) and 95.9% (92.3-99.4) for BIAregressions, respectively.


Tanita BC-418 may be valid for epidemiological studies assessing whole body composition. Its measurements may help in the diagnosis and monitoring of childhood overweight and obesity. The validation of predictive equations in specific populations may increase the precision of the technique.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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