Associations between skeletal muscle echo intensity and thickness in relation to glucose homeostasis in healthy and glucose impaired older males Academic Article uri icon

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abstract

  • Background

    Aging-related changes in muscle composition and mass may predispose older adults to developing insulin resistance. Ultrasound echo intensity and thickness are surrogates of muscle composition and mass, however, their associations with glucose homeostasis are not well established. We examined how muscle echo intensity and thickness correlate with markers of glucose homeostasis in older (≥65 years) males with normal (n = 22) or impaired (n = 10) glucose control.

    Methods

    Echo intensity was measured for the biceps brachii, rectus abdominis, and rectus femoris. Muscle thickness was evaluated for the biceps brachii + brachioradialis, rectus abdominis, and rectus femoris + vastus intermedius. Glucose homeostasis was evaluated using a 2-h oral glucose tolerance test.

    Results

    In older males with normal glucose homeostasis, higher echo intensity of the rectus abdominis and rectus femoris was moderately (r = 0.36 to 0.59) associated with 2-h glucose. On the contrary, higher muscle echo intensity of the rectus abdominis, biceps brachii, and rectus femoris was moderately-to-strongly (r = -0.36 to -0.79) associated with indices of better glucose homeostasis in the impaired group. Rectus abdominis muscle thickness was moderately associated (r = 0.36) with better glucose tolerance in the normal glucose homeostasis; however, in the glucose impaired group, muscle thickness was associated with (r = 0.37 to 0.73) with poorer glucose homeostasis.

    Conclusions

    Muscle echo intensity displays divergent associations with glucose homeostasis in older males with normal compared to impaired glucose control. Larger muscle thickness was associated with poorer glucose homeostasis in the glucose impaired group, but rectus abdominis muscle thickness was correlated with better homeostasis in healthy older males.

publication date

  • October 2021