Ultrasound Echo Intensity Is Potential Frailty Biomarker
WEDNESDAY, Sept. 20, 2017 -- Higher levels of echo intensity (EI) on ultrasound are associated with lower levels of muscle strength (MS) and greater frailty in the elderly, according to a study published online Sept. 7 in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.
Rebeca Miron Mombiela, M.D., from Universidad de Valencia/INCLIVA in Spain, and colleagues evaluated whether muscle quality based on EI is associated with MS and risk of frailty in elderly outpatients (aged 60 to 90 years). In total, 112 individuals participated, with those aged 20 to 59 years serving as controls.
The researchers observed a significant negative correlation between EI and MS (P < 0.001 for both men and women). A similar trend was seen for muscle thickness (MT), but not subcutaneous fat thickness. Additional statistically significant differences were seen between EI values, MT, MS, and quality of life and the different stages of frailty (P < 0.01).
"These results, although needing to be replicated in larger and more-diverse populations, suggest that EI obtained using ultrasound images might be used as noninvasive imaging biomarker of frailty in elderly adults and opens the possibility of accurately testing interventions performed to prevent it," the authors write.
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Posted: September 2017