Calcified Tissue International

, Volume 41, Issue 5, pp 259–261 | Cite as

Spinal bone mineral after 5 weeks of bed rest

  • Adrian LeBlanc
  • Victor Schneider
  • Jean Krebs
  • Harlan Evans
  • Satish Jhingran
  • Phillip Johnson
Clinical Investigations


Patients put at bedrest for medical reasons lose 1–2% of spinal bone mineral per week. Losses of this magnitude during even shortterm space flights of a few months would pose a serious limitation and require countermeasures. The spinal bone mineral (L2–L4) was determined in 6 healthy males (precision=2%) before and after 5 weeks of complete bed rest. Only one individual had a significant loss (3%) and the −0.9% mean change for the 6, was not significant (P=0.06). The average negative clacium balance during the 5 weeks was 4 g or 0.36% of total body calcium, similar to that reported in other bed-rest studies. Spinal bone loss, however, in healthy bed-rested males is significantly less than reported for bed-rested patients, suggesting that a large loss of spinal bone mineral does not occur during space flight missions lasting 5 weeks or less.

Key words

Bone mineral Spine Bed rest Calcium balance 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag New York Inc. 1987

Authors and Affiliations

  • Adrian LeBlanc
    • 1
  • Victor Schneider
    • 2
  • Jean Krebs
    • 3
  • Harlan Evans
    • 3
  • Satish Jhingran
    • 1
  • Phillip Johnson
    • 3
  1. 1.Baylor College of MedicineHoustonUSA
  2. 2.University of Texas Health Sciences CenterHoustonUSA
  3. 3.Johnson Space CenterHoustonTexasUSA

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