..Empowering People with Challenges  

Alternative Therapies
BMI Calculation
Muscle Mass
Stress Test
Survivor Test
HIV Testing

Why is Muscle Mass Important?  Can it be measured and tracked?

 Involuntary loss of more than 5% total body weight and loss of Lean Body Mass (LBM) may indicate HIV related wasting.  Studies show that death typically occurs when body weight falls one-third of ideal weight, or when LBM decreases by 50 percent.

There are ways to measure muscle to fat ratios, such as the Bioelectric Impedance Analysis (BIA) test.  The BIA test is a simple, non invasive, painless procedure.  By using a very small amount of electric current, this test can not only show the ratio of lean muscle to fat, but also other important indicators such as the amount of intra-cellular and extra cellular-water.   Your total body weight is not just what is important, it is what makes up that total body weight, and how it changes over time. To see a sample of a detailed BIA report using RJL Systems Cyprus 2.7, we have one in Adobe PDF Format.

To see a short instructional video on BIA testing procedures and what to expect, here are some short video clips.

The BIA Test

Windows Media Player

QuickTime Player






For more detailed scientific information about BIA, see the RJL Systems web site at: http://www.rjlsystems.com/

For more information about HIV wasting and treatment , see recognizing-hiv-associated-wasting

Some Research

bullet- Since 1989 researchers concluded that the timing of death from AIDS wasting is related to the magnitude of body-cell-mass depletion.  "We concluded that the timing of death from wasting in AIDS is related to the magnitude of body-cell-mass depletion rather than the identity of the specific disease process that causes the depletion." 1
bullet -  Since 1994 researchers have found that Bioelectrical Impedance Analysis is one of the best predictors of  survival for AIDS patients. "In our model the phase angle-- was a better single predictor of survival than any other nutritional parameter tested (body weight, BMI, serum nutritional parameters) and was also superior to widely used CD4+ cell count." 2
bullet -  Since 1998 researchers  demonstrated a clear relation between weight loss and an increased risk of individual opportunistic complications. "Our data demonstrate that weight loss of as little as 5% to 10% of body weight over 4 months is predictive of death and an increased risk of opportunistic complications, even those with no history of a previous or concurrent opportunistic complications." 3

- And even with modern day HIV cocktails, “HIV Wasting remains an important, yet often overlooked, condition in HIV-infected patients receiving HAART” 4 .

bullet - The loss of lean body mass is still the best predictor of death for people with AIDS. “Over the five years of the study, 40 people died from HIV-related conditions. Investigators found that even when HAART usage was taken into account and adjustments were made for CD4 count, social status and drug use, wasting remained a strong predictor of an increased risk of death.” 5

1 Kotler DP, Tierney AR, Wang J, Pierson PN Jr. Magnitude of body-cell-mass depletion and the timing of death from wasting in AIDS1-3 Am J Clin Nutr 1989;50:444-7
2  Ott M, Fischer H, Polat H, et al. Bioelectrical Impedance Analysis as a Predictor of Survival in Patients with Human Immunodeficiency Virus Infection. J Acqui Immune Defic Syndr Hum Retrovirol 1995;9:20-5
Wheeler DA, Gibert CL, Launer CA, et al. Weight Loss as a Predictor of Survival and Disease Progression in HIV Infection. J Acqui Immune Defic Syndr Hum Retrovirol 1998;18:80-5
4  HIV-associated wasting in the era of HAART: a practice-based approach to diagnosis and treatment. The AIDS reader. 2001 Nov;11(11):557-60, 566-9.
5 Tang AM et al. Weight loss and survival in HIV-positive patients in the era of highly active antiretroviral therapy. JAIDS 31 (2):230-236, 2002


 Please help us help others!

HIV Resource Guide
HIV Community Calendar
Technology Assistance Program
HIV Fitness Fund
Survival Skills Seminar
Educational Programs and Materials

Donate Now

CT Statewide HIV Community Calendar

Educational Programs

Consumer Technology Assistance Program

Treatment Advocacy Campaigns

Web sites:


home ] Alternative Therapies ] BMI Calculation ] Candida ] [ Muscle Mass ] HIV Art ] Videos ] Recipies ] Stress Test ] Survivor Test ] Tips ] Stories ] Exercise ] HIV Testing ]

© 2015 The Guardian Health Association, Inc
all rights reserved