Prevalence of osteoporosis in women: variation with skeletal site of measurement of bone mineral density.

T. T. Aoki, E. O. Grecu, P. R. Srinivas, Pamela T Prescott, M. Benbarka, M. M. Arcangeli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


OBJECTIVE: To determine retrospectively the prevalence of osteoporosis in a referral population of female patients and to compare the sensitivity for diagnosing osteoporosis by dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry (DXA) measurements of bone mineral density (BMD) at multiple skeletal sites. METHODS: We studied the data from 625 consecutive women (mean age, 57.3 +/- 13.9 years), who had been referred to our center for lumbar spine (anteroposterior [AP] and lateral region) and hip (femoral neck [FN], Ward's triangle [WT], trochanter, intertrochanteric region, and total hip) BMD measurements with use of DXA (Hologic QDR-2000) between June 1994 and July 1998. RESULTS: Osteoporosis (based on the World Health Organization definition--T-score of -2.5 or lower for BMD) was diagnosed by DXA at the following sites: AP spine in 21.7%, lateral spine in 43.2%, FN in 33.6%, WT in 49.1%, trochanter in 26.1%, intertrochanteric region in 25.9%, and total hip in 28.4% of study patients. Significant site differences were found in the prevalence of osteoporosis between the lateral and AP spine (P < 0.001), as well as between WT and the FN, trochanter, intertrochanteric region, and total hip (P < 0.001). In a subgroup of 71 women, forearm (ultradistal radius and radius 1/3 region) BMD results indicated low sensitivity for diagnosing osteoporosis, similar to that seen at the AP spine, trochanter, and intertrochanteric region. Not surprisingly, the prevalence of osteoporosis increased with advancing age (15.5% in patients younger than 50 years, in comparison with 59.6% in those older than 69 years of age). The frequency of misclassification of patients (osteoporosis at one site and normal BMD at another) with use of the seven measurement sites was 16.6% (104 of the 625 patients). CONCLUSIONS: For diagnosis of osteoporosis, DXA BMD measurements are significantly more sensitive at the lateral spine than at the AP spine, as well as at WT than at the FN, trochanter, intertrochanteric region, and total hip sites.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)127-131
Number of pages5
JournalEndocrine practice : official journal of the American College of Endocrinology and the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 2000

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology


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