Osteoporosis International

, Volume 18, Issue 11, pp 1507–1514

Population-based reference values for bone mineral density in young men

  • M. Høiberg
  • T. L. Nielsen
  • K. Wraae
  • B. Abrahamsen
  • C. Hagen
  • M. Andersen
  • K. Brixen
Original Article



Population-based reference values for peak bone mass density in Danish men. BMD of total hip (1.078 ± 0,14 g/cm2) differed significantly from values from National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey III and of total lumbar spine ((1.073 ± 0.125 g/cm2) differed significantly from Hologic values.


Geographic, ethnic, and socio-economic factors are known to affect bone mineral density (BMD) and peak bone mass significantly. Reference values for male peak bone mass are scarce, and the diagnosis of male osteoporosis often relies on values provided by producers of dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA) equipment.


The aim of the present study was 1) to establish population-based reference values for BMD in young men and 2) to study subgroups based on variables with suspected impact on bone metabolism. We included 783 young Caucasian men aged 20 to 30 years in the Odense Androgen Study (OAS).


Peak BMD was attained within the third decade. Obesity (BMI > 30 kg/m2) was associated with higher BMD. Abuse of anabolic steroids as well as chronic illness was associated with lower BMD. Our population-based reference values for BMD of the total hip (1.078 ± 0.14 g/cm2) differed significantly from published values from National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey III for non-Hispanic white men, while BMD of total lumbar spine (1.073 ± 0.125 g/cm2) differed significantly from Hologic reference values.


Locally derived reference values are important to avoid false positive or false negative findings during work-up in patients evaluated for osteoporosis.


Bone mineral density Male reference values 


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Copyright information

© International Osteoporosis Foundation and National Osteoporosis Foundation 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. Høiberg
    • 1
  • T. L. Nielsen
    • 1
  • K. Wraae
    • 1
  • B. Abrahamsen
    • 1
  • C. Hagen
    • 1
  • M. Andersen
    • 1
  • K. Brixen
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of EndocrinologyOdense University HospitalOdense CDenmark

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