Last update on 3 May 2013 by Dr Cécile Loï

Sarcopenia, a geriatric syndrome


 

Sarcopenia is a geriatric syndrome defined as a gradual decline in muscle mass, strength and function in the elderly. Its consequences : increased risk of falls, loss of mobility, decreased quality of life and becoming dependent (Cruz-Jentoft, A. et al 2010.).


What is sarcopenia ?

Sarcopenia is a disease, resulting in a high and progressive loss of muscle mass, strength and function during aging.

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What are the causes ?

Sarcopenia is a complex multifactorial phenomenon. Multiple factors, interdependent, participate in the development of sarcopenia as increased splanchnic extraction, decreased protein intake …

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What are the consequences ?

Sarcopenia is causing a general deterioration of the physical condition resulting in a loss of muscle mass and strength leading to an increased risk of falls, loss of independence and inevitably leads to dependance.

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Diagnosis

The diagnosis of sarcopenia is based on an assessment of:

• Muscle mass (quantified by anthropometric measurements, or by impedance absorptiometry (DEXA)
• Muscle strength (estimated by grip strength)
• The physical performance (walking speed, chair lift, get-up-and-go).

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ProteoCIT for the dietary management of sarcopenia or malnutrition, especially among frail elderly.

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