Measures of body composition and risk of heart failure in the elderly: the Rotterdam study

J Nutr Health Aging. 2011 May;15(5):393-7. doi: 10.1007/s12603-010-0288-2.


Objectives: The incidence of heart failure increases with aging. Aim of the present study was to determine whether measures body composition predict incident heart failure in older adults.

Setting: Prospective community-based cohort study. 5, 868 men and women aged 55 years and older participating the Rotterdam study. Measures of body mass index and waist circumference were obtained at baseline. Information on incident heart failure was obtained during follow-up. Cox regression analyses were performed to investigate the possible association between measure of body composition and incident heart failure.

Results: During a mean follow up of 10.9 (SD ±4.4) years, 765 participants had heart failure. After adjustment for age and gender, 1-standard deviation of body mass index, waist circumference and the waist-hip ratio predicted heart failure (HR 1.25; 95% CI 1.17-1.34; HR 1.26; 95% CI 1.18-1.36; and HR 1.17; 95% CI 1.08-1.27), respectively. In age-stratified analyses, 1-standard deviation of body mass index (1.17; 95% CI 1.06- 1.29) and waist circumference (1.16; 95% CI 1.05- 1.29) were still associated with the risk of heart failure in the oldest participants, whereas the waist-hip ratio was not (1.06; 95% CI 0.945-1.18).

Conclusion: Although estimates decrease with age, measures of overall and central adiposity predict incident heart failure among community dwelling older adults.

MeSH terms

  • Age Factors
  • Aged
  • Body Composition*
  • Body Mass Index*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Heart Failure / epidemiology
  • Heart Failure / etiology*
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Proportional Hazards Models
  • Prospective Studies
  • Risk Factors
  • Waist Circumference*
  • Waist-Hip Ratio*