Epidemiology of Sarcopenia and Factors Associated With It Among Community-Dwelling Older Adults in Taiwan

Y.H. Kuo, T.F. Wang, L.K. Liu, W.J. Lee, L.N. Peng, L.K. Chen

Am J Med Sci. 2019;357(2):124-133

Sarcopenia is a well-recognized geriatric syndrome. We sought to determine the prevalence of sarcopenia and factors associated with it among community-dwelling older adults in Taiwan.

A cross-sectional study was conducted in Yuanshan Township, Yilan County, Taiwan. Data of 731 community-dwelling adults aged 65 and older were evaluated. Demographic characteristics, anthropometry, medical history, biochemistry results, and dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry results were collected for analysis.

Males had a higher rate of sarcopenia than did females and had lower values for body weight, body mass index, waist circumference, percentage of body fat, and lean body mass. Poor nutritional status as determined by the Mini Nutritional Assessment correlated positively with markers for sarcopenia. Levels of vitamin D and folic acid correlated positively with some sarcopenia markers.

Comment: Gender differences and nutritional factors may influence the development of sarcopenia. Vitamin D is positively correlated with relative appendicular skeletal muscle mass in males with sarcopenia, and folic acid was positively correlated with gait speed in females with sarcopenia