Physical Activity Scale for the Elderly (PASE) Score Is Related to Sarcopenia in Noninstitutionalized Older Adults

J Geriatr Phys Ther. 2019 Jul/Sep;42(3):130-135. doi: 10.1519/JPT.0000000000000139.


Background and purpose: Sarcopenia, a loss of muscle mass and strength accompanying aging, is common in older adults who are not physically active. Nevertheless, the association between physical activity and sarcopenia has not been extensively studied. Therefore, we examined the relationship of both muscle mass and muscle strength with physical activity as quantified using the Physical Activity Scale for Elderly (PASE).

Methods: PASE score, muscle mass by bioimpendiometry, and muscle strength by handgrip were evaluated in a cohort study of 420 older adult participants (mean age 82.4 [5.9] years), admitted to the Comprehensive Geriatric Assessment Center. Sarcopenia was assessed as indicated in the European Working Group on Sarcopenia in Older People (EWGSOP) consensus.

Results: PASE score was lower in sarcopenic (40.2 [89.0]) than in non-sarcopenic (92.0 [52.4]) older adults (P < .001). Curvilinear regression analysis demonstrated that PASE score is related with muscle mass (R = 0.63; P < .001) and strength (R = 0.51; P < .001).

Conclusions: The present study indicates that PASE score is curvilinearly related to muscle mass and strength and that low PASE score identifies sarcopenic noninstitutionalized older adults. This evidence suggests that PASE score evaluated together with muscle mass and strength may identify older adults at high risk of sarcopenia.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Cohort Studies
  • Electric Impedance
  • Exercise / physiology*
  • Exercise Test
  • Female
  • Geriatric Assessment
  • Hand Strength*
  • Humans
  • Independent Living
  • Male
  • Muscle, Skeletal / pathology*
  • Organ Size
  • Sarcopenia / pathology*
  • Sarcopenia / physiopathology*