A pilot observational study measuring acute sarcopenia in older colorectal surgery patients

Carly Welch, Carolyn A Greig, Zaki K Hassan-Smith, Thomas D Pinkney, Janet M Lord, Thomas A Jackson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


OBJECTIVE: To explore variability in acute changes in muscle mass and function in older patients undergoing elective colorectal surgery, as well as feasibility of measures, in order to refine study processes to inform the protocol for a larger study.

RESULTS: Results are presented for seven participants recruited to this pilot study. It is possible to perform serial measurements of bilateral anterior thigh thickness (BATT) and handgrip strength prior to, within 24 h of surgery, and 1 week postoperatively. Gait speed can be reliably measured preoperatively and at 1 week postoperatively. In this pilot study, BATT and gait speed declined at 1 week postoperatively (median BATT 4.17 cm, 3.47 cm, p = 0.028; median gait speed 0.89 m/s, 0.83 m/s, p = 0.043). Baseline hsCRP correlated with change in BATT (τb = 0.73, p = 0.04) and baseline DHEA-S correlated with change in gait speed (τb = 0.87, p = 0.02). This pilot study has assisted to refine the protocol for our larger study, which will further characterise these changes.

Original languageEnglish
Article number24
JournalBMC Research Notes
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 14 Jan 2019


  • Acute Disease
  • Aged
  • Biomarkers
  • Colorectal Surgery/adverse effects
  • Feasibility Studies
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Geriatric Assessment
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Pilot Projects
  • Postoperative Complications/blood
  • Sarcopenia/blood
  • Walking Speed/physiology


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