PTH level but not 25 (OH) vitamin D level predicts bone loss rates in the elderly
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- Arabi, A., Baddoura, R., El-Rassi, R. et al. Osteoporos Int (2012) 23: 971. doi:10.1007/s00198-011-1659-1
We assessed the impact of calciotropic hormones on bone loss in 195 elderly subjects. After a median follow up of 4 years, parathyroid hormone (PTH) correlated negatively with changes in bone mineral density (BMD) at all skeletal sites. After adjustment for potential predictors of bone loss in the elderly, PTH level alone explained 3% of the variance in BMD changes at the hip.
This study assessed the impact of calciotropic hormones on bone loss rates in an elderly population-based cohort of 195 ambulatory men and women, aged 65–85 years and followed up for a median of 4 years.
Calcium intake, serum calcium, and phosphorus were assessed at baseline. Serum creatinine was measured at follow up visit. The 25 (OH) vitamin D [25-OHD] and PTH were measured at baseline and at follow up. Bone mass at the lumbar spine, hip, forearm and total body, as well as body composition was measured at baseline and at follow up by dual energy X-ray absorptiometry.
Mean 25-OHD level was 14.7 ± 6.4 ng/ml and mean PTH level was 47.9 ± 30.4 pg/ml. Age correlated negatively with percent changes in BMD at all skeletal sites (p < 0.05). Changes in body mass index (BMI) and in body composition correlated positively with BMD changes at all sites, except at the forearm. There was no correlation between 25-OHD and changes in BMD except at the trochanter (r = 0.19, p < 0.008). Conversely, PTH negatively correlated with changes in BMD at all skeletal sites (r = −0.14 to −0.27, p < 0.05). This correlation persisted after adjustment for age, changes in BMI, changes in fat mass and lean mass, serum creatinine, calcium intake, and 25-OHD levels. PTH level alone explained 3% of the variance in BMD changes at all hip subregions.
Serum PTH, but not 25-OHD, predicted bone loss rates in the elderly. Thus, it is important to normalize PTH level when correcting hypovitaminosis D in the elderly.