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Osteoporosis Risk Factors Identified in Men

But lack of data precludes estimates of relative risks and identification of best screening tools

THURSDAY, May 8 (HealthDay News) -- Older men with a low body mass index may be at increased risk of developing osteoporosis, but there isn't enough data to establish relative risks in men or identify the best screening methods, according to a review. In a separate article, the American College of Physicians offers screening guidelines and recommends screening high-risk men with dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry. Both reports are published in the May 6 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine.

Hau Liu, M.D., of the Santa Clara Valley Medical Center in San Jose, Calif., and colleagues reviewed a 1997 meta-analysis of 167 studies that evaluated risk factors for men and women, 102 additional studies that evaluated risk factors, and 20 diagnostic study articles.

In men without a known diagnosis of osteoporosis or fracture, the researchers found that the most significant risk factors for low bone mineral density-mediated osteoporotic fracture were age over 70 years and a body mass index of less than 20-25. They also found that weight loss, physical inactivity, corticosteroid use, prior osteoporotic fracture and androgen deprivation therapy were important predictors of fractures.

"Although we identified many risk factor studies published since the 1997 meta-analysis, heterogeneity precluded us from calculating pooled estimates of relative risk," the authors conclude. "In addition, our comprehensive review identified only 20 studies evaluating osteoporosis screening tests in men. Only quantitative ultrasonography and the Osteoporosis Self-Assessment Screening Tool had sufficient data to form preliminary conclusions. It remains unclear whether other tests might be useful as screening tests in men."

Authors in both studies report a financial relationship to the pharmaceutical industry.

Abstract - Liu
Full Text
Full Text - American College of Physicians

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