Validation for measurements of skeletal muscle areas using low-dose chest computed tomography

Woo Hyeon Lim, Chang Min Park

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Various methods were suggested to measure skeletal muscle areas (SMAs) using chest low-dose computed tomography (chest LDCT) as a substitute for SMA at 3rd lumbar vertebra level (L3-SMA). In this study, four SMAs (L1-SMA, T12-erector spinae muscle areas, chest wall muscle area at carina level, pectoralis muscle area at aortic arch level) were segmented semi-automatically in 780 individuals taking concurrent chest and abdomen LDCT for healthcare screening. Four SMAs were compared to L3-SMA and annual changes were calculated from individuals with multiple examinations (n = 101). Skeletal muscle index (SMI; SMA/height2) cut-off for sarcopenia was determined by lower 5th percentile of young individuals (age ≤ 40 years). L1-SMA showed the greatest correlation to L3-SMA (men, R2 = 0.7920; women, R2 = 0.7396), and the smallest annual changes (0.3300 ± 4.7365%) among four SMAs. L1-SMI cut-offs for determining sarcopenia were 39.2cm2/m2 in men, and 27.5cm2/m2 in women. Forty-six men (9.5%) and ten women (3.4%) were found to have sarcopenia using L1-SMI cut-offs. In conclusion, L1-SMA could be a reasonable substitute for L3-SMA in chest LDCT. Suggested L1-SMI cut-offs for sarcopenia were 39.2cm2/m2 for men and 27.5cm2/m2 for women in Asian.

Original languageEnglish
Article number463
JournalScientific Reports
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 2022


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