Back to Journals » International Journal of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease » Volume 11 » Issue 1

Evaluation of body composition in COPD patients using multifrequency bioelectrical impedance analysis

Authors de Blasio F, de Blasio F, Miracco Berlingieri G, Bianco A, La Greca M, Franssen F, Scalfi L

Received 12 April 2016

Accepted for publication 25 June 2016

Published 30 September 2016 Volume 2016:11(1) Pages 2419—2426


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Richard Russell

Francesca de Blasio,1 Francesco de Blasio,2,3 Giulia Miracco Berlingieri,2 Andrea Bianco,3,4 Marta La Greca,1 Frits M E Franssen,5 Luca Scalfi1

1Department of Public Health, Medical School, “Federico II” University of Naples, 2Respiratory Medicine and Pulmonary Rehabilitation Section, Clinic Center, Private Hospital, Naples, 3Department of Medicine and Health Sciences “V Tiberio”, University of Molise, Campobasso, 4Department of Cardio-Thoracic and Respiratory Sciences, Second University of Naples, Naples, Italy; 5Department of Research and Education, CIRO, Horn, the Netherlands

Background: Multifrequency bioelectrical impedance analysis (MF-BIA) is a technique that measures body impedance (Z) at different frequencies (5, 10, 50, 100, and 250 kHz). Body composition may be estimated using empirical equations, which include BIA variables or, alternatively, raw BIA data may provide direct information on water distribution and muscle quality.
Objectives: To compare raw MF-BIA data between COPD patients and controls and to study their relationship with respiratory and functional parameters in COPD patients.
Methods: MF-BIA was performed (Human Im-Touch analyzer) in 212 COPD patients and 115 age- and BMI-matched controls. Fat-free mass (FFM) and fat mass were estimated from BIA data, and low- to high-frequency (5 kHz/250 kHz) impedance ratio was calculated. Physical fitness, lung function and respiratory muscle strength were also assessed in COPD patients.
Results: After adjusting for age, weight, and body mass index, FFM and the 5/250 impedance ratio were lower in COPD patients (P<0.001) and were negatively affected by disease severity. In both male and female patients, the 5/250 impedance ratio was significantly correlated mainly with age (r=−0.316 and r=−0.346, respectively). Patients with a 5/250 impedance ratio below median value had lower handgrip strength (P<0.001), 6-minute walk distance (P<0.005), respiratory muscle strength (P<0.005), forced expiratory volume in 1 second (P<0.05) and vital capacity (P<0.005). Finally, the 5/250 impedance ratio was reduced (P<0.05) in patients with Global Initiative for Chronic Obstructive Lung Disease (GOLD) III and IV (compared to those with GOLD I and II) or a BODE index between 6 and 10 points (compared to those with BODE index between 1 and 5 points).
Conclusion: MF-BIA may be a useful tool for assessing body composition and nutritional status in COPD patients. In particular, the impedance ratio could give valuable information on cellular integrity and muscle quality.

Keywords: muscle quality, impedance ratio, muscle strength

Creative Commons License This work is published and licensed by Dove Medical Press Limited. The full terms of this license are available at and incorporate the Creative Commons Attribution - Non Commercial (unported, v3.0) License. By accessing the work you hereby accept the Terms. Non-commercial uses of the work are permitted without any further permission from Dove Medical Press Limited, provided the work is properly attributed. For permission for commercial use of this work, please see paragraphs 4.2 and 5 of our Terms.

Download Article [PDF]  View Full Text [HTML][Machine readable]