Nav: Home

A fracture anywhere reduces bone density everywhere

September 24, 2018

Breaking a bone causes bone density losses throughout the body, not just close to the site of the fracture, and primarily around the time of the fracture, two new studies from UC Davis Health show.

The studies are among the first to associate fractures with systemic bone loss. They also begin the path to finding treatments that preserve long-term skeletal health and reduce susceptibility to additional fractures and, potentially, osteoporosis, which is diagnosed when bone-density losses are severe.

Both investigations were led by Blaine Christiansen, whose research focuses on identifying changes in musculoskeletal tissue due to injury, aging or disease.

"We know one fracture seems to lead to others, but we haven't known why," said Christiansen, associate professor of orthopaedic surgery at UC Davis. "Our work is the first step on the path to identifying the cellular mechanisms of systemic bone loss."

The first study, published in Osteoporosis International, was based on about 4,000 participants in the Study of Osteoporotic Fractures, an observational study of older women that included hip bone mineral density (BMD) measures and fracture history gathered regularly over 20 years.

Outcomes showed that hip BMD decreased over time for all women in the study, but was greatest for those who had fractured a bone ? even if the fracture was not near the hip. BMD reductions averaged between .89 and .77 percent per year for those with fractures, and .66 percent per year for those with no fractures. Those losses were greatest within the first two years of a break.

Published in the Journal of Bone and Mineral Research, the second study was conducted using mice with femur fractures and BMD tests in various bones. Once again, bone loss occurred throughout the body, most notably in the spine, and was greatest within the first two weeks of fracture. It also was accompanied by higher levels of inflammatory markers in the blood.

Outcomes of the second study showed interesting age-related recovery differences as well. Younger mice eventually recovered their pre-fracture BMD levels, while older mice did not.

Christiansen next hopes to further characterize the post-fracture inflammatory factors that may contribute to bone loss following fracture.

"It's possible that these factors are key to initiating BMD loss once a bone is broken," Christiansen said. "Ultimately, we hope to develop therapeutic strategies that interrupt those processes and prevent bone loss."
-end-
More information about UC Davis Health, including its Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, is at health.ucdavis.edu.

University of California - Davis Health System

Related Osteoporosis Articles:

Oxytocin can help prevent osteoporosis
In a laboratory experiment with rats, Brazilian researchers succeeded in reversing natural processes associated with aging that lead to loss of bone density and strength.
New strategy against osteoporosis
An international research team has found a new approach that may be able to reduce bone loss in osteoporosis and maintain bone health.
New review on management of osteoporosis in premenopausal women
An IOF and ECTS Working Group have published an updated review of literature published after 2017 on premenopausal osteoporosis.
Cardiac CT can double as osteoporosis test
Cardiac CT exams performed to assess heart health also provide an effective way to screen for osteoporosis, potentially speeding treatment to the previously undiagnosed, according to a new study.
Osteoporosis treatment may also protect against pneumonia
A recent study published in the Journal of Bone and Mineral Research found that nitrogen-containing bisphosphonates (N-BPs) such as alendronate, which are widely used to treat postmenopausal osteoporosis, are linked with lower risks of pneumonia and of dying from pneumonia.
New pharmaceutical target reverses osteoporosis in mice
Biomedical engineers at Duke University have discovered that an adenosine receptor called A2B can be pharmaceutically activated to reverse bone degradation caused by osteoporosis in mouse models of the disease.
A link between mitochondrial damage and osteoporosis
In healthy people, a tightly controlled process balances out the activity of osteoblasts, which build bone, and osteoclasts, which break it down.
Many stroke patients not screened for osteoporosis, despite known risks
Many stroke survivors have an increased risk of osteoporosis, falls or breaks when compared to healthy people.
Many postmenopausal women do not receive treatment for osteoporosis
The benefits of treating osteoporosis in postmenopausal women outweigh the perceived risks, according to a Clinical Practice Guideline issued today by the Endocrine Society.
A new 'atlas' of genetic influences on osteoporosis
A ground-breaking new study led by researchers from the Lady Davis Institute (LDI) at the Jewish General Hospital (JGH) has succeeded in compiling an atlas of genetic factors associated with estimated bone mineral density (BMD), one of the most clinically relevant factors in diagnosing osteoporosis.
More Osteoporosis News and Osteoporosis Current Events

Trending Science News

Current Coronavirus (COVID-19) News

Top Science Podcasts

We have hand picked the top science podcasts of 2020.
Now Playing: TED Radio Hour

Listen Again: IRL Online
Original broadcast date: March 20, 2020. Our online lives are now entirely interwoven with our real lives. But the laws that govern real life don't apply online. This hour, TED speakers explore rules to navigate this vast virtual space.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#574 State of the Heart
This week we focus on heart disease, heart failure, what blood pressure is and why it's bad when it's high. Host Rachelle Saunders talks with physician, clinical researcher, and writer Haider Warraich about his book "State of the Heart: Exploring the History, Science, and Future of Cardiac Disease" and the ails of our hearts.
Now Playing: Radiolab

Falling
There are so many ways to fall–in love, asleep, even flat on your face. This hour, Radiolab dives into stories of great falls.  We jump into a black hole, take a trip over Niagara Falls, upend some myths about falling cats, and plunge into our favorite songs about falling. Support Radiolab by becoming a member today at Radiolab.org/donate.