Journal Article

Prevalence, components, and correlates of metabolic syndrome (MetS) among elderly Muscovites

Metelskaya, V., Shkolnikova, M. A., Shalnova, S. A., Andreev, E. M., Deev, A. D., Jdanov, D. A., Shkolnikov, V. M., Vaupel, J. W.

Archives of Gerontology and Geriatrics, 55:2, 231-237 (2012)


Keywords: Russian Federation, biological characteristics, diabetes, metabolism, obesity, old age


The goal of this study is to estimate the prevalence of MetS, together with its components and correlates, among elderly Russians. Our population-based sample included randomly selected residents of Moscow aged 55 and older: 955 women with an average age of 67.6, and 833 men with an average age of 68.9. MetS was defined according to National Cholesterol Education Program Adult Treatment Panel III (NCEP-ATPIII). The prevalence of MetS was found to be 41.7% in women and 26.8% in men. It tended to decrease with age in men, but not in women. MetS was inversely related to education in women, but not in men. The most prevalent individual components of MetS were as follows: hypertension (64.4%), abdominal obesity (55%), and decreased high density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL C) (46%) for women; and hypertension (71%) and fasting hyperglycemia (35.2%) for men. An elevated level of triglycerides (TG) was the rarest MetS component, affecting 23.5% of women and 22.1% of men. The higher female prevalence of MetS was attributable to abdominal obesity. MetS was found to be associated with markers of insulin resistance (IR), low-grade inflammation, and insufficient fibrinolysis. Although the metabolic burden is an important contributor to high levels of ill-health and cardiovascular mortality among elderly Russians (especially women), it does not explain why cardiovascular mortality is much higher in Russia than in other industrialized countries.