Hand-Grip Dynamometry Predicts Future Outcomes in Aging Adults

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Background and Purpose:

One use of clinical measures is the prediction of future outcomes. The purpose of this systematic review was to summarize the literature addressing the value of grip strength as a predictor of important outcomes.


Relevant literature was located using 4 bibliographic databases, searching article reference lists, and perusing personal files.


Forty-five relevant research articles were found. The research involved both healthy subjects and patients; it tended to focus on middle-aged and older adults. The primary outcome addressed was mortality/survival (24 articles), but disability (9 articles), complications and/or increased length of stay (12 articles), and other outcomes were also examined. Low grip strength was shown consistently to be associated with a greater likelihood of premature mortality, the development of disability, and an increased risk of complications or prolonged length of stay after hospitalization or surgery.


Given its predictive validity and simplicity, dynamometrically measured grip strength should be considered as a vital sign useful for screening middle-aged and older adults.

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