Loss of skeletal muscle mass and function (sarcopenia) is common in individuals with obesity due to metabolic changes associated with a sedentary lifestyle, adipose tissue derangements, comorbidities (acute and chronic diseases) and during the ageing process. Co-existence of excess adiposity and low muscle mass/function is referred to as sarcopenic obesity (SO), a condition increasingly recognized for its clinical and functional features that negatively influence important patient-centred outcomes. Effective prevention and treatment strategies for SO are urgently needed, but efforts are hampered by the lack of a universally established SO definition and diagnostic criteria. Resulting inconsistencies in the literature also negatively affect the ability to define prevalence as well as clinical relevance of SO for negative health outcomes.
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