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Visceral-to-subcutaneous fat ratio as a predictor of the multiple metabolic risk factors for subjects with normal waist circumference in Korea

Authors Oh YH, Moon JH, Kim HJ, Kong MH

Received 5 September 2017

Accepted for publication 17 November 2017

Published 11 December 2017 Volume 2017:10 Pages 505—511


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Professor Ming-Hui Zou

Yun Hwan Oh,1,2 Ji Hyun Moon,1,2 Hyeon Ju Kim,1,3 Mi Hee Kong1,3

1Department of Family Medicine, Jeju National University Hospital, 2Department of Medicine, Graduate School of Jeju National University, 3Department of Family Medicine, School of Medicine, Jeju National University, Jeju, Republic of Korea

Purpose: Visceral obesity has been recognized as a predictor of metabolic risk factors. However, few studies have evaluated the metabolic risks in subjects with normal waist circumference (WC). We aimed to examine if the visceral-to-subcutaneous fat ratio (VSR) has diagnostic value to identify multiple metabolic risk factors in subjects with normal WC, compared with visceral fat area (VFA) and subcutaneous fat area (SFA).
Methods: This is a cross-sectional study in which we have compared mean VFA, SFA, and VSR according to each metabolic risk factor. We performed a receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve analysis for VFA, SFA, and VSR to assess their accuracy in picking out two or more non-adipose factors for metabolic syndrome.
Results: For each metabolic risk factor, mean VSRs were significantly different between groups (risk-absent group vs risk-present group) in men and women, except for men with low high-density lipoprotein. However, mean VFAs and SFAs showed no significant differences between groups. VSR showed superior diagnostic values in predicting at least two non-adipose metabolic risk factors in men and similar diagnostic value in women. Areas under ROC curves for VSR and VFA were 0.705 and 0.649 in men (P=0.028) and 0.798 and 0.785 in women (P=0.321).
Conclusion: For men with a normal WC, VSR appeared to effectively predict the presence of multiple metabolic risk factors. Thus, VSR may serve as an indicator for identifying men who have a normal WC and multiple metabolic risk factors.

Keywords: visceral fat, subcutaneous fat, metabolic syndrome, visceral-to-subcutaneous fat ratio

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