Evaluation of lean body weight equation by dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry measures

Lauren M. Beckman, Joseph I. Boullata, Paige L. Fisher, Charlene W. Compher, Carrie P Earthman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Background: When managing patients with disorders that require clinical intervention, a practical assessment of body habitus is valued. The Duffull-Green lean body weight (LBW) equation was derived and validated in adults across a wide body mass index (BMI) range. Whether this predictive equation will perform well in patients at BMI extremes or perform better than a widely used empiric "ideal" body weight (IBW) equation is unknown. Materials and Methods: Calculated LBW and calculated IBW were each compared with the dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry (DXA)-derived lean body mass (LBM) by simple linear regression. A mixed model was used to determine how well the LBW equation performed over time in patients with more than 1 DXA measurement. Results: At time 0, 32 patients were 18-67 years old, and all were obese (BMI: 36-65 kg/m2), while the remaining 7 had parenteral nutrition-dependent intestinal failure (BMI: 17-25 kg/m2). A subset of patients underwent bariatric surgery after time 0 (BMI at follow-up: 22-49 kg/m2). The LBW equation was a predictor of LBM (R2 = 0.67, P <.0001), while the IBW equation was not (R2 = 0.04, P =.25). The LBW equation remained a predictor of LBM over time (P <.0001) without significant interaction by number of months since time 0. Conclusion: The Duffull-Green LBW equation successfully predicted lean body mass in a patient population with a wide range of BMIs at both a single point in time and after considerable weight loss. In the clinical setting, an equation that performs well in various disease states and body sizes is advantageous.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)392-397
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1 2017

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© The American Society for Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition.


  • adult
  • body composition
  • nutrition
  • nutrition assessment


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