Original Study| Volume 22, ISSUE 11, P2366-2372.e3, November 2021

Association of Creatinine-to-Cystatin C Ratio with Myosteatosis and Physical Performance in Older Adults: The Japan Shimanami Health Promoting Program



      Sarcopenia is a risk factor for poor outcomes in older adults. Identification of plasma markers may facilitate screening of sarcopenia. We previously reported that creatinine-to-cystatin C ratio is a simple marker of muscle mass. To further assess the clinical relevance of the creatinine-to-cystatin C ratio, we investigated its association with myosteatosis and physical performance.


      Observational study.

      Setting and Participants

      Cross-sectional analysis of the dataset obtained from a Japanese population consisting of 1468 older (≥60 years of age) community residents.


      The mean attenuation values of the skeletal muscle calculated from computed tomography images of the midthigh were used as an index of myosteatosis, while the cross-sectional area of the muscle was used as a proxy for muscle mass. Physical performance was assessed by 1-leg standing time.


      Creatinine-to-cystatin C ratio was positively associated with the cross-sectional area of muscle fiber-rich muscles, while it showed an inverse association with fat-rich muscle areas, resulting in the positive association between creatinine-to-cystatin C ratio and the mean attenuation value of the skeletal muscle [creatinine-to-cystatin C ratio quartiles (Q), Q1: 47.4 ± 4.8, Q2: 48.9 ± 4.4, Q3: 49.8 ± 4.1, Q4: 50.9 ± 3.7, P < .001]. The results of the linear regression analysis adjusted for major covariates (including muscle cross-sectional area) identified creatinine-to-cystatin C ratio as an independent determinant of the mean attenuation value (Q1: reference, Q2: β = 0.07, P = .019, Q3: β = 0.11, P < .001, Q4: β = 0.16, P < .001). Low creatinine-to-cystatin C ratio was independently associated with 1-leg standing time, although the association was attenuated substantially by adjusting for skeletal muscle cross-sectional area and mean attenuation value.

      Conclusion and Implications

      Creatinine-to-cystatin C ratio was associated with myosteatosis in older adults, independent of the muscle mass. Creatinine-to-cystatin C ratio may serve as a convenient marker of sarcopenia.


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