Prevalence of sarcopenia and its association with socioeconomic status among the elderly in Tehran
Background: Sarcopenia is a syndrome characterized by progressive and generalized loss of skeletal muscle mass and strength. It imposes significant costs on health care systems. Socioeconomic status is also the root cause of healthy challenges among the elderly. Therefore, investigating the association between sarcopenia and socioeconomic status is very important to improve healthy ageing of the elderly. The aim of this study was to investigate the prevalence of sarcopenia and its association with socioeconomic status among the elderly in Tehran.
Methods: Cross-sectional and case-control studies were conducted from August 2014−July 2015 among 310 men and 334 women elderly (60 and over years old) in Tehran health centers. Randomization, restriction and matching were setting during study design to minimize selection bias. Then study participants were recruited via phone call. Participants’ phone numbers were already recorded in a telephone book electronically. When there were two elderly people in the same house, only one person was invited randomly. Association between sarcopenia and socio-economic status was analyzed by SPSS version 22.
Results: The overall prevalence of sarcopenia in the elderly was 16.5%. Prevalenceamong the low-income elderly was relatively higher than (20.5%) that among those with middle income status (18.2%) while in the higher income, the proportion of sarcopenia was very low (12.8%). The findings indicated that 339(52.6%) were in low-income status, 304(47.1%) were in middle-income status and 1(.2%) in high-income class.
Conclusion: There was a significant association between socioeconomic status and sarcopenia (P-value <0.001). The odd risk of sarcopenia was 0.97 times more likely higher in low socioeconomic class than those who were in middle and high income classes.
Keywords: Sarcopenia, Socioeconomic status, elderly people