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J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2018 Nov 1;103(11):3986-3992. doi: 10.1210/jc.2018-01095.

Association of Serum TSH With Handgrip Strength in Community-Dwelling Euthyroid Elderly.

Author information

1
Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism, Asan Medical Center, University of Ulsan College of Medicine, Seoul, South Korea.
2
Departments of Orthopaedic Surgery, Medical College of Georgia, Augusta University, Augusta, Georgia.
3
Department of Cellular Biology and Anatomy, Medical College of Georgia, Augusta University, Augusta, Georgia.

Abstract

Context:

Despite apparent muscle weakness in overt or even subclinical hyperthyroidism, the effects of thyroid function in the reference range on muscle strength are unknown.

Objective:

To investigate the association of serum TSH and free T4 with handgrip strength (HGS) in euthyroid elderly.

Design and Setting:

A nationally representative population-based, cross-sectional study from the Korea National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys.

Participants:

A total of 650 men aged ≥50 years and 533 postmenopausal women.

Main Outcome Measures:

HGS was measured using a digital grip strength dynamometer, and low muscle strength was defined based on the Korean specific cutoff point of HGS (28.9 and 16.8 kg in men and women, respectively).

Results:

After adjustment for confounders, lower serum TSH but not free T4 was associated with lower HGS in men (P = 0.032). Compared with men with high-normal TSH, those with low-normal TSH consistently showed 5.0% lower HGS (P = 0.027), with a linear decrease in HGS across decreasing serum TSH quartiles (P for trend = 0.018). Men with low muscle strength had 22.0% lower serum TSH than those without (P = 0.015), and the odds for the risk of low muscle strength was 3.76 times higher among men with low-normal TSH than it was among those with high-normal TSH (P = 0.021). However, these associations were not observed in postmenopausal women.

Conclusions:

These results suggest that serum TSH level at the lower end of reference range may be associated with low muscle strength, especially in older men.

PMID:
30137405
DOI:
10.1210/jc.2018-01095

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