, Volume 74, Issue 4, pp 357-365
Date: 23 Jan 2004

Discriminative Capacity of Calcaneal Quantitative Ultrasound and of Osteoporosis and Fracture Risk Factors in Postmenopausal Women with Osteoporotic Fractures

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Bone fragility fractures constitute the principal complication of osteoporosis. The identification of individuals at high risk of sustaining osteoporotic fractures is important for implementing preventive measures. The purpose of this study is to analyze the discriminative capacity of a series of osteoporosis and fracture risk factors, and of calcaneal quantitative ultrasound (QUS), in a population of postmenopausal women with a history of osteoporotic fracture. A cross-sectional analysis was made of a cohort of 5195 women aged 65 or older (mean±SD: 72.3±5.4 years) seen in 58 primary care centers in Spain. A total of 1042 women (20.1%) presented with a history of osteoporotic fracture. Most fractures (93%) were non-vertebral. Age-adjusted odds ratios corresponding to each decrease in one standard deviation of the different QUS parameters ranged from 1.47 to 1.55 (P < 0.001) for fractures. The age-adjusted multivariate analysis yielded the following risk factors independently associated with a history of osteoporotic fracture: number of fertile years, a family history of fracture, falls in the previous year, a history of chronic obstructive airway disease, the use of antiarrhythmic drugs, and a low value for any of the QUS parameters. The area under the receiver operating characteristic curve of the best model was 0.656. In summary, a series of easily assessable osteoporotic fracture risk factors has been identified. QUS was shown to discriminate between women with and without a history of fracture, and constitutes a useful tool for assessing fracture risk. Various of the vertebral and hip fracture risk factors frequently cited in North American and British populations showed no discriminative capacity in our series—thus suggesting that such factors may not be fully applicable to our population and/or to the predominant type of fractures included in the present study.

For a complete list of ECOSAP investigators, see Appendix ECOSAP, Ecografia Ósea in Atención Primaria