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Comparison of two methods of assessing total body water at sea level and increasing high altitude

Lookup NU author(s): Dr David Woods


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Fluid retention is a recognized feature of acute mountain sickness. However, accurate assessment of hydration, including the quantification of body water, has traditionally relied on expensive and non-portable equipment limiting its utility in the field setting. We compared the assessment of total body water (TBW) and their relationship to total body weight using two non-invasive methods using the NICas single-frequency bioimpedance analysis (SF-BIA) system and the BodyStat QuadScan 4000 multifrequency BIA system (MF-BIA). TBW measurements were performed at rest at sea level and at high altitude (HA) at 3833 m postexercise and at rest and thereafter at rest at 4450 m and 5129 m on 47 subjects. The average age was 34.5 +/- 9.3 years with an age range of 21-54 years (70.2% male). There were strong correlations between TBW assessment with both methods at sea level (r = 0.90; 95% CI 0.78-0.95: P< 0.0001) and at HA (r = 0.92; 0.8-0.94: P< 0.0001), however, TBW readings were 0.2 l and 1.91 l lower, respectively, with the NICaS. There was a stronger correlation between TBW and body weight with the QuadScan (r = 0.91; P< 0.0001) than with the NICaS (r = 0.83; P< 0.0001). The overall agreement between the two TBW methods was good, but the 95% confidence intervals around these agreements were relatively wide. We conclude that there was reasonable agreement between the two methods of BIA for TBW, but this agreement was lower at HA.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Boos CJ, Holdsworth DA, Hall DP, Mellor A, O'Hara J, Woods DR

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Clinical Physiology and Functional Imaging

Year: 2014

Volume: 34

Issue: 6

Pages: 478-484

Print publication date: 01/11/2014

Online publication date: 04/05/2014

Acceptance date: 02/12/2013

ISSN (print): 1475-0961

ISSN (electronic): 1475-097X

Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell


DOI: 10.1111/cpf.12121

PubMed id: 24797153


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