Osteoporosis International

, Volume 5, Issue 5, pp 371–376 | Cite as

Influence of anthropometric parameters on ultrasound measurements of os calcis

  • D. Hans
  • A. M. Schott
  • M. E. Arlot
  • E. Sornay
  • P. D. Delmas
  • P. J. Meunier
Original Article


Few data have been published concerning the influence of height, weight and body mass index (BMI) on broadband ultrasound attenuation (BUA), speed of sound (SOS) and Lunar “stiffness” index, and always in small population samples. The first aim of the present cross-sectional study was to determine whether anthropometric factors have a significant influence on ultrasound measurements. The second objective was to establish whether these parameters have real effect on bone or whether their infuence is due only to measurement errors. We measured, in 271 healthy French women (mean age 77±11 years; range 31–97 years), the following parameters: age, height, weight, lean and fat body mass, heel width, foot length, knee height and height of the external malleolus (HEM). Simple linear regression analyses between ultrasound and anthropometric parameters were performed. Age, height and heel width were significant predictors of SOS; age, height, weight, foot length, heel width, HEM, fat mass and lean mass were significant predictors of BUA; age, height, weight, heel width, HEM, fat mass and lean mass were significant predictors of stiffness. In the multiple regression analysis, once the analysis had been adjusted for age, only heel width was a significant predictor for SOS (p=0.0007), weight for BUA (p=0.0001), and weight (p=0.0001) and heel width (p=0.004) for the stiffness index. Besides their statistical meaning, the regression coefficients have a more clinically relevant interpretation which is developed in the text. These results confirm the influence of anthropometric factors on the ultrasonic parameter values, because BUA and SOS were in part dependent on heel width and weight. The influence of the position of the transducer on the calcaneus should be taken into account to optimize the methods of measurement using ultrasound.


Anthropometric parameters BUA SOS Ultrasound 


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Copyright information

© European Foundation for Osteoporosis 1995

Authors and Affiliations

  • D. Hans
    • 1
  • A. M. Schott
    • 1
  • M. E. Arlot
    • 1
  • E. Sornay
    • 1
  • P. D. Delmas
    • 1
  • P. J. Meunier
    • 1
  1. 1.INSERM Unit 403, Epidemiology SectionPavilion F, Hôpital Edouard HerriotLyonFrance

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