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Irlbeck, Thomas; Janitza, Silke; Poros, Balazs; Golebiewski, Monika; Frey, Lorenz; Paprottka, Philipp M.; Silva, Teresa da; Irlbeck, Michael; Böcker, Wolfgang and Weig, Thomas (2018): Quantification of Adipose Tissue and Muscle Mass Based on Computed Tomography Scans: Comparison of Eight Planimetric and Diametric Techniques Including a Step-By-Step Guide. In: European Surgical Research, Vol. 59, No. 1-2: pp. 23-34

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Background: Recent scientific work proved that knowledge about body composition beyond the body mass index is essential. Both adipose tissue and muscular status are determining risk factors of morbidity and mortality. Analysis of single cross-sectional computed tomography (CT) images, acquired during routine care only to prevent additional radiation exposure, provide a detailed insight into the body composition of chronically and critically ill patients. Methods: This retrospective study included 490 trauma patients of whom a whole-body multiple detector CT scan was acquired at admission. From a single cross-sectional CT, we compared eight diametric and planimetric techniques for the assessment of core muscle mass as well as visceral and subcutaneous adipose tissue. Furthermore, we derived formulas for converting the measurement results of various techniques into each other. Results: For intra-and interobserver reliability, we obtained intraclass correlation coefficients (ICCs) ranging from 0.947 to 0.997 (intraobserver reliability) and from 0.850 to 0.998 (interobserver reliability) for planimetric measurements. Diametric techniques conferred lower ICCs with 0.851-0.995 and 0.833-0.971, respectively. Overall, area-based measurements of abdominal adipose tissue yielded highly correlated results with diametric measures of obesity. For example, the Pearson correlation of visceral adipose tissue and sagittal abdominal diameter was 0.87 for male and 0.82 for female patients. Planimetric and diametric muscle measurements correlated best for lean psoas area and bilateral diametric measurement of the psoas with a Pearson correlation of 0.90 and 0.93 for male and female patients, respectively. Conclusion: Planimetric measurements should remain the gold standard to describe fat and muscle compartments. Diametric measurements could however serve as a surrogate if planimetric techniques are not readily available or feasible as for example in large registries.

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