Effects of a Multicomponent Exercise Program in Physical Function and Muscle Mass in Sarcopenic/Pre-Sarcopenic Adults

H. Makizako, Y. Nakai, K. Tomioka, Y. Taniguchi, N. Sato, A. Wada, R. Kiyama, K. Tsutsumimoto, M. Ohishi, Y. Kiuchi, T. Kubozono, T. Takenaka

J Clin Med. 2020 May 8;9(5):E1386. doi: 10.3390/jcm9051386.

This study aimed to assess the effects of a multicomponent exercise program on physical function and muscle mass in older adults with sarcopenia or pre-sarcopenia. Moreover, we aim to standardize the exercise program for easy incorporation in the daily life of community-dwelling older adults as a secondary outcome.

A single-blind randomized controlled trial was conducted with individuals (≥60 years) who had sarcopenia or pre-sarcopenia (n = 72). Participants were randomly assigned to the exercise and control groups. The exercise program consisted of 12 weekly 60-minute sessions that included resistance, balance, flexibility, and aerobic training. Outcome measures were physical function and muscle mass. Assessments were conducted before and immediately after the intervention.

Among the 72 participants (mean age: 75.0 ± 6.9 years; 70.8% women), 67 (93.1%) completed the trial. Group-by-time interactions on the chair stand (p = 0.02) and timed "up and go" (p = 0.01) tests increased significantly in the exercise group. Although the exercise group showed a tendency to prevent loss of muscle mass, no significant interaction effects were observed for cross-sectional muscle area and muscle volume.  

Comment:  The 12-week exercise program improved physical function in the intervention group. Although it is unclear whether the program is effective in increasing muscle mass, a multicomponent exercise program would be an effective treatment for physical function among older adults with sarcopenia.