Loss of muscle strength and muscle mass, also called sarcopenia, is a phenomenon caused by aging, lifestyle and/or chronic diseases. However, it can be accelerated by acute illness accompanied by a reduced intake of food and the patient being bedridden.

In the elderly who are admitted to hospital, this can result in a rapid decrease in mobility, self-reliance and quality of life. Research into the presence of sarcopenia is unfortunately not a regular part of the diagnosis and treatment of these elderly people and this leads to the underestimation of this problem.

In this thesis, we have shown that sarcopenia is common in geriatric patients and is an important risk factor for premature death. The research provides a useful diagnostic algorithm for gerontology departments (in Dutch hospitals) to easily determine whether an elderly person suffers from sarcopenia using an inexpensive balloon-squeeze pressure metre and bio-impedance measurement.

Defence date: 15/01/2021

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Sipers, W. M. W. H.
Sipers, W. M. W. H.
Zuyderland Medical Centre