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Int J Obes Relat Metab Disord. 1993 Jan;17(1):45-51.

Measurement of abdominal and intra-abdominal fat in postmenopausal women by dual energy X-ray absorptiometry and anthropometry: comparison with computerized tomography.

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Department of Clinical Chemistry, Glostrup Hospital, University of Copenhagen, Denmark.


The aim was to develop a model for prediction of intraabdominal adipose tissue (AT) with combined dual energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA) and anthropometry in postmenopausal women. Intra-abdominal and subcutaneous AT from the 1st to the 4th lumbar intervertebral disk was measured by computerized tomography (CT) (as a reference method) in 25 postmenopausal women (BMI 19.9-35.1 kg/m2). Fat was measured in the corresponding region by DXA. Abdominal sagittal diameters, skinfold thicknesses, and circumferences were also measured. Measurements of abdominal fat by CT and DXA were valid (r = 0.9, s.e.e.%: 7%). Measurement of abdominal fat by DXA explained about 80% of the variation in the intra-abdominal AT (by CT), whereas the waist to hip ratio was the only variable that correlated significantly with the intra-abdominal to subcutaneous AT ratio. Abdominal fat measured by DXA, the waist to hip ratio, and the sum of trunk skinfold thicknesses could in combination accurately predict the intra-abdominal AT measured by CT (r2 = 0.91, s.e.e.% = 15%). The sagittal diameter, measured either anthropometrically or by CT, was not a superior predictor of the intra-abdominal AT. We conclude that the intra-abdominal AT can be predicted in postmenopausal women by DXA combined with anthropometry.

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