Abdominal diameter index: A more powerful anthropometric measure for prevalent coronary heart disease risk in adult males

Donald A. Smith, E. M. Ness, R. Herbert, C. B. Schechter, R. A. Phillips, J. A. Diamond, P. J. Landrigan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

39 Scopus citations


Aim: The authors wished to compare the strength of association of several anthropometric measures of body size and fat distribution among themselves and in comparison with other known risk factors for prevalent coronary heart disease (CHD). Methods: Prevalent CHD was assessed in 466 middle-aged, male, multiracial Triborough Bridge and Tunnel Authority officers in New York City by verified history, electrocardiogram or exercise stress test. Anthropometric measures included body mass index, waist, hip and thigh circumferences, waist-hip ratio, waist-thigh ratio, sagittal abdominal diameter and abdominal diameter index (sagittal abdominal diameter/thigh circumference). Results were compared with other CHD risk factors measured simultaneously (history of diabetes, smoking, blood pressure, lipid profile, apolipoproteins A and B, lipoprotein (a), homocysteine, fibrinogen, urinary microalbumin, serum vitamin E and ferritin) and a calculated 10-year CHD risk using a Framingham algorithm (10-year Framingham CHD risk). Results: CHD was found in 29 individuals. Of the six anthropometric measures, abdominal diameter index gave the largest and most significant standardized odds ratio (OR) for CHD [1.80, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.20, 2.71], equivalent to 10-year Framingham CHD risk. Men in the highest compared with the lowest tertile of abdominal diameter index had a univariate OR of 5.47 (95% CI 1.55, 19.28) which was the only anthropometric measure that remained significant after adjusting for 10-year Framingham CHD risk. Conclusions: For middle-aged American men, abdominal diameter index may be the most powerful anthropometric measure of risk for prevalent CHD.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)370-380
Number of pages11
JournalDiabetes, Obesity and Metabolism
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 2005


  • Abdominal diameter index
  • Anthropometry
  • Body weight
  • Coronary heart disease
  • Risk assessment
  • Visceral obesity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Endocrinology


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