Utility of SARC-F for Assessing Physical Function in Elderly Patients With Cardiovascular Disease

J Am Med Dir Assoc. 2017 Feb 1;18(2):176-181. doi: 10.1016/j.jamda.2016.10.019. Epub 2016 Dec 31.


Objectives: A simple and inexpensive tool for screening of sarcopenia would be helpful for clinicians. The present study was performed to determine whether the SARC-F questionnaire is useful in screening of patients with cardiovascular disease (CVD) for impaired physical function.

Design: Cross-sectional study.

Setting: Single university hospital.

Participants: A total of 235 Japanese patients ≥65 years old admitted to our hospital for CVD.

Measurements: SARC-F, handgrip strength, leg strength, respiratory muscle strength, standing balance, usual gait speed, Short Physical Performance Battery (SPPB) score, and 6-minute walking distance were measured before discharge from hospital. The patients were divided into 2 groups according to SARC-F score: SARC-F < 4 (nonsarcopenia group) and SARC-F ≥ 4 (sarcopenia group).

Results: The sarcopenia prevalence rate was 25.5% and increased with age (P trend < .001). The sarcopenia group (SARC-F score ≥ 4) had significantly lower handgrip strength, leg strength, and respiratory muscle strength, poorer standing balance, slower usual gait speed, lower SPPB score, and shorter 6-minute walking distance compared to the nonsarcopenia group (SARC-F score < 4). Patients in the sarcopenia group had consistently poorer physical function even after adjusting for covariates.

Conclusion: The SARC-F questionnaire is a useful screening tool for impaired physical function in elderly CVD patients. These findings support the use of the SARC-F for screening in hospital settings.

Keywords: SARC-F; Sarcopenia; cardiovascular disease; elderly; physical function; screening.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Cardiovascular Diseases*
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Female
  • Geriatric Assessment*
  • Health Surveys*
  • Hospitals, University
  • Humans
  • Japan
  • Male
  • Muscle Strength / physiology*