DXA; anthropometry; lean mass; ARDS; longitudinal studies


Objective—Rapid muscle wasting occurs during acute respiratory failure, resulting in muscle weakness and functional impairments. This study examines survivors’ body composition in the year after acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) and tests associations of patient characteristics, hospital exposures, and survivors’ strength and physical functioning with whole body percent lean mass.

Design—Prospective cohort study with 6- and 12-month follow-up

Setting—National study enrolling patients from 5 study centers

Patients—ARDS survivors (N=120)

Interventions—None Measurements and

Main Results—Lean and fat mass from dual energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA). On average, survivors gained whole body total mass (+1.4kg, 0.1, 2.7) and fat mass (+1.2 kg, 0.2, 2.2), and maintained lean mass (+0.2kg, −0.4, 0.8) between 6 and 12 months. Proportionally, percent fat mass increased and percent lean mass decreased for the whole body, trunk, and legs (p

Conclusions—In the first year after ARDS, patients gained fat mass and maintained lean mass. We found no association of whole body percent lean mass with commonly-hypothesized hospital risk factors. Direct measurement of body composition and performance-based functional measures may be helpful for understanding functional recovery in ICU survivors.

Original Publication Citation

Crit Care Med. 2018 August ; 46(8): 1238–1246. doi:10.1097/CCM.0000000000003183.

Document Type

Peer-Reviewed Article

Publication Date



Critical Care Medicine




Family, Home, and Social Sciences



University Standing at Time of Publication

Full Professor

Included in

Psychology Commons