Background: Globally there are several operational definitions for sarcopenia, complicating clinical and research applications. Objective: The objective of the Australian and New Zealand Society for Sarcopenia and Frailty Research (ANZSSFR) Task Force on Diagnostic Criteria for Sarcopenia was to reach consensus on the operational definition of sarcopenia for regional use by clinicians and researchers.
Method: A four-Phase modified Delphi process was undertaken in which 24 individuals with expertise or a recognised interest in sarcopenia from different fields across Australia and New Zealand were invited to be Task Force members. An initial face-to-face meeting was held in Adelaide, South Australia, in November 2017, followed by two subsequent online Phases conducted by electronic surveys. A final Phase was used to approve the final statements. Responses were analysed using a pre-specified strategy. The level of agreement required for consensus was 80%.
Results: In Phase 2, 94.1% of Task Force respondents voted in favour of adopting an existing operational definition of sarcopenia. In Phase 3, 94.4% of respondents voted in favour of adopting the European Working Group on Sarcopenia in Older People (EWGSOP) definition as the operational definition for sarcopenia in Australia and New Zealand.
Conclusion: With consensus achieved, the ANZSSFR will adopt, promote and validate the EWGSOP operational definition of sarcopenia for use by clinicians and researchers in Australia and New Zealand.