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Arq Bras Endocrinol Metabol. 2009 Nov;53(8):1020-5.

Total estradiol, rather than testosterone levels, predicts osteoporosis in aging men.

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Divisão de Endocrinologia Feminina e Andrologia, Setor de Endocrinologia, Hospital da Lagoa, Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brasil.



To study and establish sex hormone cutoff levels for osteoporosis risk in men over 50 years old.


Case-control study of 216 men > 50 years, 110 with osteoporosis (O) and 106 with normal bone density (C). We measured estradiol (E2), sex hormone binding globulin (SHBG), total testosterone (TT) and albumin. Free testosterone (FT) and bioavailable testosterone (BT) were calculated through Vermeulen's formula.


There was no difference in TT between groups. Relative risks of osteoporosis were 1.89 for E2 < 37 pg/mL (p = 0.02); 1.91 for SHBG > 55 nmol/L (p = 0.019); 2.5 for FT < 7 ng/dL (p = 0.015); 2.7 for BT < 180 ng/dL (p = 0.0003).


In men over 50 years old, TT was not indicative of osteoporosis risk while E2 < 37 ng/mL was. SHBG > 55 nmol/L, FT < 7 ng/dL and BT < 180 ng/dL can represent additional indications for osteoporosis screening in men over 50 years old.

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