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C. Pongmala, C. Stonsaovapak, M. van Emde Boas, H. Bhanderi, A. Luker, F. Michalakis, P. Kanel, R.L. Albin, J.M. Haus, N.I. Bohnen

BACKGROUND: Postural instability and gait difficulties (PIGD) are a significant cause of mobility loss and lower quality of life in Parkinson’s disease (PD). When PD progresses, patients may experience falls and freezing of gait (FoG) resulting in fear of falling and increasing sedentariness. Sedentary behavior results in sarcopenia associated with other changes in body composition, especially in older patients becoming frail. Previous studies have shown gender-specific changes in body composition with aging as well as gender disparities in symptoms and progression of PD, yet the association between gender-specific body composition and PIGD symptoms such as FoG along with falls, remains unexplored. OBECTIVE: This study aimed to investigate the association between gender-specific changes in body composition, FoG and falls assessment. Methods: 136 PD subjects underwent detailed clinical test batteries and had whole-body composition assessed using dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA). Multivariate logistic forward stepwise regression was performed to define body composition associations for FoG and falls. RESULTS: Multivariate regression analysis revealed that in males with PD, lower leg lean mass was significantly associated with the presence of FoG (OR, 0.429; 95% CI, 0.219-0.839; p=0.013) but not with falls. In females with PD, higher leg adipose mass was significantly associated with falls (OR, 4.780; 95% CI, 1.506-15.174; p=0.008) but not with FoG. CONCLUSION: These observations suggest gender specific associations between body composition and FoG vs. falls in PD. Future research should explore the impact of interventions on body composition in individuals with PD by paying specific attention to gender differences.

C. Pongmala ; C. Stonsaovapak ; M. van Emde Boas ; H. Bhanderi ; A. Luker ; F. Michalakis ; P. Kanel ; R.L. Albin ; J.M. Haus ; N.I. Bohnen (2024): Body Composition, Falls, and Freezing of Gait in Parkinson’s Disease: Gender-Specific Effects. The Journal of Frailty and Aging (JFA). http://dx.doi.org/10.14283/jfa.2024.31

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