The findings indicate an increase in mortality risk at a threshold that is more sensitive compared to that estimated in earlier studies.
In fact, the results show that a handgrip strength that is only slightly below the average of a comparable population (considering a person’s sex, age, and body height) is indicative of health conditions leading to earlier death.
A stronger handgrip compared to other people of the same age, sex, and body height was not found to reduce the mortality risk.
“Handgrip strength is a cheap and easy to perform test, but it may help with early diagnosis of health problems and other underlying health conditions. Monitoring the handgrip strength of the elderly (and in fact middle-aged people) may provide great benefits for the public health of aging populations. Our findings make it clear that handgrip strength is a very precise and sensitive measure of underlying health conditions. Therefore, we suggest it to be used as a screening tool in medical practice,” noted Nadia Steiber from the University of Vienna.