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J Diabetes Complications. 2011 Jul-Aug;25(4):216-21. doi: 10.1016/j.jdiacomp.2011.02.004. Epub 2011 Mar 31.

Prevalence of osteoporosis and vertebral fractures in postmenopausal women with type 2 diabetes mellitus and their relationship with duration of the disease and chronic complications.

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Division of Endocrinology and Diabetes, Agamenon Magalhães Hospital, University of Pernambuco Medical School, Recife, 57035-030 Maceió, Alagoas, Brazil.


Controversial data suggest that patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus have an increased risk of fractures despite having, in some studies, higher bone mineral density.


The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence of osteoporosis and morphometric vertebral fractures in 148 postmenopausal diabetic women, aged 61.87±7.85 years, and their relationship with clinical and metabolic factors and chronic complications of the disease.


The prevalence of osteoporosis was 30.4% at lumbar spine (LS) and 9.5% at femoral neck (FN). The prevalence of vertebral fractures was 23%, mostly mild and located at the thoracic spine. Patients with fractures were older (P<.001), had been in the menopause for a long period (P=.005), had lower creatinine clearance (P=.026) had and lower bone mineral density at LS (P=.01) and FN (P=.042). The frequency of fractures increased with age (P<.001), with the duration of the disease (P=.037) and with the presence of retinopathy (P=.030). In patients with fractures, the prevalence of osteoporosis increased to 40% at LS (P=.004) and to 35.7% at FN (P=.049). After logistic regression adjustment, it was observed that the likelihood of presenting vertebral fractures was significantly increased at the age of 60 years or older (P<.001) and with the presence of osteoporosis at LS (P=.006), irrespective of blood glucose control.


We found a high prevalence of osteoporosis and vertebral fractures in postmenopausal women with type 2 diabetes mellitus, irrespective of blood glucose control, and these conditions were more frequent in long-standing disease and in patients with retinopathy and impaired renal function.

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