Measurement of Muscle Strength in Haemodialysis Patients by Pinch and Hand Grip Strength and Comparison to Lean Body Mass Measured by Multifrequency Bio-Electrical Impedance

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Abstract

Background:

Muscle weakness is a risk factor for mortality in haemodialysis (HD) patients; we wished to determine whether measuring the composition of the arm with bioimpedance was associated with arm muscle strength.

Methods:

We measured pinch strength (PS) and hand grip strength (HGS) in 250 adult HD patients with corresponding post-dialysis multifrequency bioelectrical assessments with segmental body analysis.

Results:

Mean age 64.0 ± 15.6, 66% male and 45.6% diabetic. The maximum HGS in the dominant or non-fistula arm was 18.9 ± 9.2 kg and PS 4.09 ± 1.96 kg respectively, with a correlation of r = 0.80, p < 0.001. HGS was associated with body cell mass (β 0.37, p < 0.001) and PS with appendicular muscle mass (β 0.06, p < 0.001). Both HGS and PS were independently associated with the ratio of extracellular water (ECW) to total body water (TBW); β -139.5, p = 0.024, β -44.8, p < 0.001 in the arm. The presence of an arterio-venous fistula increased the ECW/TBW ratio in the arm from 0.383 ± 0.009 to 0.390 ± 0.012, p < 0.05.

Conclusion:

Muscle strength measured by HGS and PS was associated with both markers of whole body and segmental body composition within the arm, particularly ECW/TBW. Bioimpedance measurements and assessment of muscle strength should be measured in the non-fistula arm.

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