Author(s): Formosa MM, XuerebAnastasi A
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Abstract Osteoporosis and fractures are complex conditions influenced by an interplay of genetic and environmental factors. The aim of the study was to investigate three biochemical parameters including total serum calcium, total serum alkaline phosphatase (sALP) and albumin in relation to bone mineral density (BMD) at the lumbar spine and femoral neck (FN), and with all-type of low-trauma fractures in Maltese postmenopausal women. Levels were also correlated with age and physical activity. A case-control study of 1045 women was performed. Women who suffered a fracture were classified as cases whereas women without a fracture history were included as controls subdivided into normal, osteopenic, or osteoporotic according to their BMD measurements. Blood specimens were collected following good standard practice and testing was performed by spectrophotometry. Calcium and sALP levels were weakly correlated with FN BMD levels (calcium: r = -0.111, p = 0.002; sALP: r = 0.089, p = 0.013). Fracture cases had the lowest serum levels of calcium, sALP and albumin relative to all other control groups, which decreased with increasing age, possibly increasing fracture risk. Biochemical levels were lowest in women who sustained a hip fracture and more than one fracture. Biochemical parameters decreased with reduced physical activity; however, this was most evident for fracture cases. Reduced physical activity was associated with lower BMD levels at the hip, and to a lower extent at the spine. In conclusion, results suggest that levels of serum calcium and albumin could be indicative of fracture risk, whereas calcium levels and to lower extent sALP levels could be indicators of hip BMD.
This article was published in Calcif Tissue Int
and referenced in Journal of Osteoporosis and Physical Activity