Background: Older patients account for nearly half of the United States surgical volume, and age alone is insufficient to predict surgical fitness. Various metrics exist for risk stratification, but little work has been done to describe the association between measures. We aimed to determine whether analytic morphomics, a novel objective risk assessment tool, correlates with functional measures currently recommended in the preoperative evaluation of older patients.
Materials and methods: We retrospectively identified 184 elective general surgery patients aged >70 y with both a preoperative computed tomography scan and Vulnerable Elderly Surgical Pathways and outcomes Assessment within 90 d of surgery. We used analytic morphomics to calculate trunk muscle size (or total psoas area [TPA]) and univariate logistic regression to assess the relationship between TPA and domains of geriatric function mobility, basic and instrumental activities of daily living (ADLs), and cognitive ability.
Results: Greater TPA was inversely correlated with impaired mobility (odds ratio [OR] = 0.46, 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.25-0.85, P = 0.013). Greater TPA was associated with decreased odds of deficit in any basic ADLs (OR = 0.36 per standard deviation unit increase in TPA, 95% CI 0.15-0.87, P <0.03) and any instrumental ADLs (OR = 0.53, 95% CI 0.34-0.81; P <0.005). Finally, patients with larger TPA were less likely to have cognitive difficulty assessed by Mini-Cog scale (OR = 0.55, 95% CI 0.35-0.86, P <0.01). Controlling for age did not change results.
Conclusions: Older surgical candidates with greater trunk muscle size, or greater TPA, are less likely to have physical impairment, cognitive difficulty, or decreased ability to perform daily self-care. Further research linking these assessments to clinical outcomes is needed.
Keywords: Activities of daily living; Analytic morphomics; Functional status; Geriatric assessment; Mobility; Risk assessment; Trunk muscle size.
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