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21-07-2010 | Bone health | Article

BMD increased in men with radiographic hip osteoarthritis


Free abstract

MedWire News: Older men with moderate to severe radiographic hip osteoarthritis (RHOA) have significantly higher areal and integral bone mineral density (BMD) than men of similar age without the condition, the results of a US study indicate.

Previous studies have revealed an association between BMD at distant sites and both prevalent and incident osteoarthritis in women, and reported the presence of higher systemic BMD, elevated BMD, and altered bone metabolism adjacent to joints with osteoarthritis in both men and women.

To investigate further, Nancy Lane, from the University of California at Davis School of Medicine in Sacramento, and colleagues, examined data for 5995 men aged 65 years and above from the Study of Osteoporotic Fractures in men.

Standing pelvic X-rays were performed on 4024 men and scored for prevalent RHOA severity, while 3886 men underwent dual energy X-ray absorptiometry (DEXA) in order to obtain measures of areal BMD, and true volumetric BMD. BMD findings were compared with RHOA scores using linear regression.

In all, 3529 men had no or mild RHOA (summary grade 0-1), while 209 had moderate RHOA (summary grade 2), and 185 had severe RHOA (summary grade ≥3), the team reports in the journal Osteoporosis International. Moderate and severe groups were slightly older than controls, while individuals in the moderate group were less active and had a higher comorbidity score than those in the severe group.

Compared with men with no or mild RHOA, both the moderate and severe groups had significantly higher areal BMD at all BMD sites, at a range of 3.7-10.0%, a difference that remained significant even after adjusting for age, body mass index, height, race, physical activity level based on the Physical Activity for the Elderly Scale score, clinical site, and muscle strength.

Interestingly, the results also revealed that compared with controls, total hip and lumbar spine cortical volumetric BMD measures were significantly higher for men with moderate and severe RHOA, whereas no increase was seen for trabecular volumetric BMD. For both areal and volumetric BMD, men with severe RHOA had greater scores than those with moderate RHOA on all measures, aside for lumbar areal BMD.

The team concludes: "These areal BMD and volumetric BMD results support previous reports of an association between increased BMD and large joint radiographic OA in subject groups with RHOA compared to those without RHOA."

MedWire ( is an independent clinical news service provided by Current Medicine Group, a trading division of Springer Healthcare Limited. © Springer Healthcare Ltd; 2010

By Liam Davenport

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