Protein-energy wasting, which involves loss of fat and muscle mass, is prevalent and is associated with mortality in hemodialysis (HD) patients. We investigated the associations of fat tissue and muscle mass indices with all-cause mortality in HD patients. The study included 162 patients undergoing HD. The fat tissue index (FTI) and skeletal muscle mass index (SMI), which represent respective tissue masses normalized to height squared, were measured by bioimpedance analysis after dialysis. Patients were divided into the following four groups according to the medians of FTI and SMI values: group 1 (G1), lower FTI and lower SMI; G2, higher FTI and lower SMI; G3, lower FTI and higher SMI; and G4, higher FTI and higher SMI. The associations of the FTI, SMI, and body mass index (BMI) with all-cause mortality were evaluated. During a median follow-up of 2.5 years, 29 patients died. The 5-year survival rates were 48.6%, 76.1%, 95.7%, and 87.4% in the G1, G2, G3, and G4 groups, respectively (P = 0.0002). The adjusted hazard ratio values were 0.34 (95% confidence interval [CI] 0.10-0.95, P = 0.040) for G2 vs. G1, 0.13 (95%CI 0.01-0.69, P = 0.013) for G3 vs. G1, and 0.25 (95%CI 0.07-0.72, P = 0.0092) for G4 vs. G1, respectively. With regard to model discrimination, on adding both FTI and SMI to a model with established risk factors, the C-index increased significantly when compared with the value for a model with BMI (0.763 vs. 0.740, P = 0.016). Higher FTI and/or higher SMI values were independently associated with reduced risks of all-cause mortality in HD patients. Moreover, the combination of the FTI and SMI may more accurately predict all-cause mortality when compared with BMI. Therefore, these body composition indicators should be evaluated simultaneously in this population.
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