Does the metabolic syndrome predict mobility impairment in the elderly?

  • O. L
  • R.S. T
Citations of this article
Mendeley users who have this article in their library.
Get full text


The predictive importance of the metabolic syndrome and its components for declining mobility were tested in a 5-year follow-up study of four elderly birth cohorts (65, 75, 80 and 85 years of age; n = 946). In the age group of 65 years, the subjects with mobility decline were more often diabetics (24.6 vs. 15.5%, P = 0.060), had higher blood glucose (6.2 vs. 5.8 mmol/l, P < 0.05), higher fasting plasma insulin (13.2 vs. 11.4 IU/l, P < 0.01), and higher body mass index (28.4 vs. 27.2 kg/m2, P < 0.05) than the others. In the 75 year-old group, the mobility decline was associated with lower HDL-cholesterol (1.4 vs. 1.6 mmol/l, P < 0.05) and higher insulin (15.9 vs. 12.8 IU/l, P < 0.10). In the 80 year-old group, insulin was higher in subjects whose mobility declined (11.3 vs. 17.9 IU/l, P < 0.05) but in the oldest group insulin tended to be lower in the subjects with declining mobility. In non-diabetic subjects, blood glucose and plasma insulin were associated with declining mobility in the 65 year-old cohort, only. After controlling for gender and baseline mobility, one quartile of both insulin and BMI increased the probability of mobility decline by 35%, mainly of difficulties in walking up stairs. Of the components of metabolic syndrome, obesity and hyperinsulinemia as its consequence appear causal of declining mobility.




O., L., & R.S., T. (1998). Does the metabolic syndrome predict mobility impairment in the elderly? Archives of Gerontology and Geriatrics, 26(2), 131–139.

Register to see more suggestions

Mendeley helps you to discover research relevant for your work.

Already have an account?

Save time finding and organizing research with Mendeley

Sign up for free