Accuracy of waist circumference for predicting other components of metabolic syndrome: evidence from the Bambuí cohort study of the elderly

Abstract Objectives: To examine the accuracy of waist circumference to predict two or more metabolic syndrome (MS) components among the elderly and to compare it with the recommendations of the Joint Interim Statement (JIS) for adults. Method: The study was conducted among participants of the baseline of the Bambuí (Minas Gerais) Cohort Study. The best waist circumference cut-off point for the outcome was determined by the Younden Index. The accuracy of such cut-off points was assessed by the area under the ROC curve (AUROC) and the sensitivity, specificity and positive and negative predictive values. Results: The prevalence of MS was 63.8% among women and 43.4% among men. Of these, the waist circumference cut-off that best predicted two or more components of MS (≥88 cm) was similar to that recommended by JIS (≥90 cm) (AUROC=0.673 and 0.672, respectively). Among women, the corresponding value was higher (≥92 cm) than recommended by the JIS (≥80 cm) (AUROC=0.605 and 0.560, respectively). Conclusion: The overall accuracy of waist circumference (AUROC) for the outcome was low for both genders, indicating that this measure is not an effective predictor of other components of MS in the study population.