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Introduction: Sarcopenia, obesity, and sarcopenic obesity are considered risk factors for the health of the elderly, which may cause or worsen the reduction in functional capacity. Objective: To determine the prevalence of sarcopenia, obesity, and sarcopenic obesity among community-dwelling and institutionalized female elderly in Caxias do Sul, Brazil. Methods: Observational epidemiological study, with cross-sectional design. 423 elderly women (≥60 years old) institutionalized and community-dwellers, participated in the study. Sarcopenia was identified according to the criteria established by the European Working Group on Sarcopenia in Older People (EWGSOP). The gait speed test estimated low skeletal muscle mass (SMM) by bioimpedance, low handgrip strength using a hand dynamometer, and low physical performance. Obesity was defined as Body Mass Index ≥27.0kg/m² and sarcopenic obesity by the simultaneous occurrence of obesity and sarcopenia. The Chi-Square test was performed, with a 5% significance level. Results: The overall prevalence of obesity was 53.9%. Sarcopenia was observed in 16.3% of the total sample, affecting 7.5% of the elderly in the community and 25.1% in institutions (p≤0.0001). Regarding sarcopenic obesity, 0.9% of the community and 3.8% of institutionalized elderly presented the dysfunction. Non-sarcopenic elderly women had a high prevalence of obesity. In the elderly of both groups, sarcopenia was more frequent in those with advanced age. Conclusion: Institutionalized elderly women had a higher prevalence of sarcopenia, emphasizing the importance of paying attention to the health of this population and highlighting the need for preventive measures.
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