History at a glance
- The study builds on previous research linking grip strength to mortality, but the new research compares grip strength to others of gender, age and body height instead of the general healthy population.
- The researchers measured the patient’s grip strength by squeezing a dynamometer—a tool used to measure strength—twice with each hand.
- They found that grip strength slightly less than the average for the comparable population may indicate a greater risk of mortality.
Hand grip strength can indicate health problems, and scientists now have a way to measure what it means for the general population.
“In general, hand strength depends on a person’s gender, age and height. Our task was to find the threshold associated with hand strength that would signal a practitioner to perform further examinations if the patient’s hand grip strength is below this threshold, “Sergei Scherbov, a researcher at the International Institute for the Analysis of Applied Systems. said in a press release.
“It’s similar to measuring blood pressure. When the blood pressure level is outside a certain range, the doctor can decide or prescribe a certain drug or send the patient to a specialist for further examination, “said Scherbov.
STUDY builds on previous research linking grip strength to mortality. But the new research compares one’s control with others in terms of gender, age and body height instead of the general healthy population.
The researchers measured the patient’s grip strength by having them squeeze a dynamometer—a tool used to measure strength—twice with each hand.
They found that a grip strength slightly less than the average for the comparable population may indicate a greater risk of mortality. However, a stronger control was not found to reduce the risk.
“It is important to note that we are not suggesting that people should train hand strength specifically to lower mortality risks,” said Sonja Spitzer, a postdoctoral researcher at the Wittgenstein Center for Demography and Global Human Capital and the University of Vienna. “Most likely, if someone improves their hand strength through exercise, it will have little or no effect on their overall health.”
“However, low handgrip strength may serve as an indicator of disability because it reflects low muscle strength, which is associated with a higher risk of death,” Spitzer continued. “A healthy lifestyle and exercise are still the best approaches to maintaining good health or improving it in the long term,” Spitzer concludes.
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Published on July 25, 2022