Physical training preserves bone mineral density in postmenopausal women with forearm fractures and low bone mineral density
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One hundred and twelve postmenopausal women with low bone mineral density (BMD) and forearm fractures were randomized to physical training or control group. After one year the total hip BMD was significantly higher in the women in the physical training group. The results indicate a positive effect of physical training on BMD in postmenopausal women with low BMD.
The fivefold increase in hip fracture incidence since 1950 in Sweden may partially be due to an increasingly sedentary lifestyle. Our hypothesis was that physical training can prevent bone loss in postmenopausal women.
One hundred and twelve postmenopausal women 45 to 65 years with forearm fractures and T-scores from −1.0 to −3.0 were randomized to either a physical training or control group. Training included three fast 30-minute walks and two sessions of one-hour training per week. Bone mineral density (BMD) was measured in the hip and the lumbar spine at baseline and after one year.
A per protocol analysis was performed, including 48 subjects in the training group and 44 subjects in the control group. The total hip BMD increased in the training group +0.005 g/cm2 (±0.018), +0.58%, while it decreased −0.003 g/cm2 (±0.019), −0.36%, (p = 0.041) in the control group. No significant effects of physical training were seen in the lumbar spine. A sensitivity intention to treat analysis, including all randomized subjects, showed no significant effect of physical training on BMD at any site.
The results indicate a small but positive effect of physical exercise on hip BMD in postmenopausal women with low BMD.
KeywordsBone mineral density Forearm fracture Physical training Postmenopausal women
Friskis och Svettis, Stockholm, AFA Sweden, Trygg Hansa Sweden, Nycomed Sweden, Center for Gender Medicine; Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm.
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