Validation of a three-dimensional body scanner for body composition measures

Michelle M. Harbin, Alexander Kasak, Joseph D. Ostrem, Donald R. Dengel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


The accuracy of an infrared three-dimensional (3D) body scanner in determining body composition was compared against hydrostatic weighing (HW), bioelectrical impedance analysis (BIA), and anthropometry. A total of 265 adults (119 males; age = 22.1 ± 2.5 years; body mass index = 24.5 ± 3.9 kg/m2) had their body fat percent (BF%) estimated from 3D scanning, HW, BIA, skinfolds, and girths. A repeated measures analysis of variance (ANOVA) indicated significant differences among methods (p < 0.001). Multivariate ANOVA indicated a significant main effect of sex and method (p < 0.001), with a non-significant interaction (p = 0.101). Bonferroni post-hoc comparisons identified that BF% from 3D scanning (18.1 ± 7.8%) was significantly less than HW (22.8 ± 8.5%, p < 0.001), BIA (20.1 ± 9.1%, p < 0.001), skinfolds (19.7 ± 9.7%, p < 0.001), and girths (21.2 ± 10.4%, p < 0.001). The 3D scanner decreased in precision with increasing adiposity, potentially resulting from inconsistences in the 3D scanner’s analysis algorithm. A correction factor within the algorithm is required before infrared 3D scanning can be considered valid in measuring BF%.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1191-1194
Number of pages4
JournalEuropean Journal of Clinical Nutrition
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 1 2018

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© 2017, Macmillan Publishers Limited, part of Springer Nature.


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