Author(s): SornayRendu E, Boutroy S, Vilayphiou N, Claustrat B, Chapurlat RD
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Abstract Obesity is associated with higher areal bone density (aBMD) but its protective effect on the risk of fracture is controversial. We aimed to analyze bone microarchitecture and biomechanical properties in obese (OB) postmenopausal French women compared with normal weight (NW) women. A matched case-control study from the Os des Femmes de Lyon (OFELY) cohort was conducted in 63 OB women (body mass index [BMI] > 30, mean age 69 ± 8 years) age-matched with 126 NW women (19 ≤ BMI ≤ 25). Bone architecture was measured with high-resolution pQCT at the distal radius and tibia and bone strength was assessed by micro-finite element analysis (µFEA). aBMD, total body fat mass (FM) and lean mass (LM) were measured by dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA). aBMD was 15\% higher at the total hip in OB compared with NW women. At the radius, OB had 13\% and 14\% higher volumetric total and trabecular bone densities, 11\% higher cortical thickness, 13\% greater trabecular number, and 22\% lower distribution of trabecular separation compared with NW (p adjusted for height, physical activity, and medication use, <0.01 for all). Differences of a similar magnitude were found at the distal tibia. At both sites, µFEA showed significant higher values of bone strength in OB compared to controls. After normalizing values for individual body weight, we observed that all the parameters were relatively lower in OB compared to NW women. The increase of FM was fourfold greater than the increase of LM in OB. The effect of FM on bone parameters was more pronounced at the tibia compared to the non-weight-bearing site. Nevertheless, the coefficients of correlation were about one-half of those of LM for the biomechanical parameters. We conclude that higher absolute values of bone densities, cortical and trabecular architecture, and strength indices were not in proportion to the excess of BMI and particularly of FM in obese postmenopausal French women. Copyright © 2013 American Society for Bone and Mineral Research.
This article was published in J Bone Miner Res
and referenced in Journal of Patient Care