Background & aims: The association between body composition parameters measured on computed tomography (CT) and severity of acute pancreatitis (AP) is conflicting because these composition parameters vary considerably by sex and age. We previously developed normative body composition data, in healthy subjects. Z-score calculated from the normative data gives age and sex adjusted body composition parameters. We studied the above association using this novel Z-score in a large cohort of patients with AP. Methods: Between January 2014 and March 2018, patients admitted with AP and had CT scans within a week of admission, were enrolled. Body composition data including skeletal muscle (SM), subcutaneous adipose tissue (SAT) and visceral adipose tissue (VAT) were calculated from the CT scan using deep learning automated algorithm. Then we converted the value to Z-score, and then compared the same score between mild AP, moderately severe AP and severe AP defined by revised Atlanta criteria. Results: Out of 514 patients, 336 (65.4%) are mild AP, 130 (25.3%) moderately severe AP, and 48 (9.3%) severe AP. Patients with moderately severe AP had significantly lower SM-z-score than those with mild AP (1.21 vs1.73, p = 0.048) and patients with severe AP had significantly lower SAT-z-score than those with mild AP (0.70 vs.1.29, p = 0.016). VAT-z-score was not significantly different between three groups. (p = 0.76). Conclusion: Lower SM-z-score and SAT-z-score were associated with moderately severe and severe types of AP, respectively. Future prospective studies in patients with AP using Z-scores, may define the association between body composition and severity of AP, and explain the inconsistencies reported in previous studies.
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