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BIA test
Mar 20, 2004

HI there.. I recently took a BIA test and am a bit confused on the results.

My phase angle is 7.2 ( I can not find what the numbers mean) Height 67 Weight 148 Age 43 Resiactance 67 Ideal/desired wt 148 My Actual BMI was 23.18 Actual Phase 7.2 Actual BMR 1556 of fat 16.9 Wt Actual FAT 25.0 Wt ACtual BCM 53.8 WT actual ECM 55.5 Liters actual TBW 39.0 Liters actual ICW 24.8 Liters Actual ECW 14.2 My T cell has hovered always around 700; and I have been undetectable for three years; POZ for 5.

Can you either let me know what these number actually mean or direct me to a web site that has the means..

thank you so much

Response from Ms. Fields-Gardner

To respond, I will assume you are a man (if you are a woman, the results and recommendations will be different and you will need to write again to let me know so I can get it right!).

First, the body compartments should add up to your total weight. The total weight you have given adds up to only 134.3 pounds. I will use the 134.3 pounds as your actual weight (again, you will have to correct me if that is wrong). You are therefore at about 91% of your ideal weight for your height. At this amount of weight loss, you can expect to start seeing functional changes in the body placing you at a higher risk for other HIV-related complications.

We will concentrate on the three body compartments that allow us to clinically evaluate your situation and make practical recommendations: body cell mass (BCM), extracellular mass (ECM), and fat. Let's start with a comparison of actual to a functional goal:

BCM actual 53.8 pounds; BCM goal >59.2 pounds

ECM actual 55.5 pounds; ECM goal range 59-67 pounds

fat actual 25 pounds; fat goal range 16-33 pounds

While it would certainly help to know more about what medical problems you may be experiencing, here is a general view:

Your BCM is low (91% of minimum for optimal), which suggests that you may have both diet and activity level issues. Of the 14 pounds you are down in weight from ideal, about 40% of it comes from this compartment. Keep reading as we put all the pieces together at the end.

Your ECM is also low, which suggests here some dehydration. If you experienced any injury or infection at the time this BIA was taken, you may be even more dehydrated than the test shows.

Finally, your fat is within normal limits for your current weight, which suggests that this compartment is relatively preserved.

Here is what I think is going on (it would be good to have you confirm this or tell me otherwise because all I am going on is your BIA report):

You have experienced weight loss and it looks like this may have been primarily due to "starvation" or dieting (or otherwise not getting in enough calories) because the BCM and even the needed fluids don't account for enough to suggest weight was lost for other reasons.

This identifies three primary recommendations:

1. You need more calories, 2. You need to include exercise to make sure those calories are used properly, and 3. You will need to get enough fluids in to rehydrate your body

There may be other issues that come into play and you can talk to a dietitian who has a good knowledge of BIA and HIV to discuss the additional nuances or the changes in the evaluation and recommendations here.

If you feel ready to wander through some training on BIA, you can go to the link shown here, request a password, and peruse the Basic BIA Course. Good luck!

Click on "ask for a password" next to the "Basic BIA" course on this page

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