Purpose The purpose of this study is to evaluate the relationship between serum MMP9 (Matrix metalloproteinase), TIMP1 (Tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinase) levels and MMP9/TIMP1 ratio and primary sarcopenia in geriatric patients, and compare the diagnostic accuracy of such biomarkers with that of the SARC-F score. Methods A total of 88 patients aged 65 years and older were assessed in the study. Comorbidities and geriatric syndromes were determined and patients with secondary sarcopenia were excluded. EWGSOP2 criteria were used as diagnostic criteria for sarcopenia and SARC-F questionnaire was used to find individuals at risk for sarcopenia. Serum MMP9 and TIMP1 levels were analyzed by ELISA method. Results SARC-F, serum MMP9 and MMP9/TIMP1 ratio were significantly higher in the group with sarcopenia compared to the group without sarcopenia (p = 0.001, p = 0.026 and p = 0.006, respectively). In univariate logistic regression analysis, while SARC-F score and MMP9/TIMP1 ratio were significant, MMP9, TIMP1, age and gender were not. In the multivariate logistic regression analysis of the SARC-F score and the MMP9/TIMP1 ratio, it was determined that both of them were associated with sarcopenia [Odds ratio (OR) 1.447 (95%) confidence interval (CI) 1.170-1.791, p = 0.001; OR 1.127, (95%) CI 1.016-1.249, p = 0.023, respectively]. ROC curve analysis showed that the area under ROC curve (AUC) of SARC-F and MMP9/TIMP1 was 0.703 (p = 0.001, %95 CI 0.594-0.812) and 0.670 (p = 0.006, %95 CI 0.557-0.783), respectively. Conclusion Although this study supports the use of SARC-F questionnaire in daily practice; if SARC-F can't be applicable, the MMP9/TIMP1 ratio could be an alternative choice to the SARC-F.