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Decline in Muscle Strength and Performance Predicts Fracture Risk in Elderly Women and Men


CONTEXT: Muscle strength and performance are associated with fractures. However, the contribution of their rate of decline is unclear. OBJECTIVE: To assess the independent contribution of the rate of decline in muscle strength and performance to fracture risk. DESIGN, SETTING, AND PARTICIPANTS: Community-dwelling women (n = 811) and men (n = 440) aged 60 years or older from the prospective Dubbo Osteoporosis Epidemiology Study followed from 2000 to 2018 for incident fracture. Clinical data, appendicular lean mass/height2 (ht)2, bone mineral density, quadricep strength/ht (QS), timed get-up-and-go (TGUG), 5 times repeated sit-to-stand (5xSTS), and gait speed (GS) measured biennially. Rates of decline in muscle parameters were calculated using ordinary least squares regression and fracture risk was assessed using Cox's models. MAIN OUTCOME: Incident low-trauma fracture ascertained by x-ray report. RESULTS: Apart from lean mass in women, all muscle parameters declined over time. Greater rates of decline in physical performance were associated with increased fracture risk in women (Hazard ratios [HRs] ranging from 2.1 (95% CI: 1.5-2.9) for GS to 2.7 (95% CI: 1.9-3.6) for 5xSTS, while in men only the decline in GS was associated with fracture risk (HR: 3.4 [95% CI: 1.8-6.3]). Baseline performance and strength were also associated with increased fracture risk in men (HRs ranging from 1.8 (95% CI: 1.1-3.0) for QS to 2.5 (95% CI: 1.5-4.1) for TGUG, but not in women. CONCLUSION: Rate of decline in physical performance in both genders, and baseline strength and performance in men, contributed independently to fracture risk. Sit-to-stand and GS were the tests most consistently associated with fractures. Further studies are required to determine whether muscle strength and/or performance improve the predictive accuracy of fracture prediction models.

Type Journal
ISBN 1945-7197 (Electronic) 0021-972X (Linking)
Authors Alajlouni, D.; Bliuc, D.; Tran, T.; Eisman, J. A.; Nguyen, T. V.; Center, J. R.
Responsible Garvan Author Prof Jacqueline Center
Published Date 2020-09-01
Published Volume 105
Published Issue 9
Status Published in-print
DOI 10.1210/clinem/dgaa414
URL link to publisher's version