Computed Tomography Measurements of Sarcopenia Predict Length of Stay in Older Burn Patients

Kathleen S. Romanowski, Praman Fuanga, Sheryar Siddiqui, Leon Lenchik, Tina L. Palmieri, Robert D. Boutin

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1 Scopus citations


Sarcopenia and frailty are associated with aging. In older burn patients, frailty has been associated with mortality and discharge disposition, but sarcopenia has not been examined. This study aims to investigate the relationship between frailty and computed tomography (CT)-derived sarcopenia with length of stay and mortality in older burn patients. Burn patients ≥60 years old admitted between 2008 and 2017 who had chest or abdomen CT scans within 1 week of admission were evaluated. Frailty was assessed using the Canadian Study of Health and Aging Clinical Frailty Scale (CFS). Sarcopenia was assessed on CT exams by measuring skeletal muscle index (SMI) of paraspinal muscles at T12 and all skeletal muscles at L3. The relationship between frailty scores and SMI with length of stay (LOS) and mortality was determined using logistic regression. Eighty-three patients (59 men; mean age 70.2 ± 8.5 years) had chest (n = 50) or abdomen (n = 60) CT scans. Mean TBSA = 14.3 ± 14.0%, LOS = 25.8 ± 21.3 days, CFS = 4.36 ± 0.99. Sixteen patients (19.3%) died while in the hospital. CT-derived measurement of SMI at T12 was significantly associated with LOS (P < .05), but not with mortality (P = .561). CT-derived metrics at L3 were not significantly associated with outcomes. CFS was not associated with LOS (P = .836) or mortality (P = .554). In older burn patients, low SMI of the paraspinal muscles at T12 was associated with longer LOS.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3-8
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of burn care & research : official publication of the American Burn Association
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 3 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Emergency Medicine
  • Rehabilitation


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