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J Clin Densitom. 2013 Apr-Jun;16(2):160-7. doi: 10.1016/j.jocd.2012.02.011. Epub 2012 Jun 6.

Bone loss in chronic hemiplegia: a longitudinal cohort study.

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Instituto de Medicina Física e Reabilitação (IMREA, Institute of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation), do Hospital das Clínicas da Faculdade de Medicina da, University of São Paulo School of Medicine, São Paulo, Brazil.


The purpose of this study was to evaluate hemiplegic stroke patients in terms of long-term changes in bone mineral density and related factors. We conducted a longitudinal cohort study, involving 57 first-stroke patients (40 males) with chronic hemiplegia (for more than 12mo), at a university rehabilitation center in the city of São Paulo, Brazil. Bone loss, body composition, lean mass, and fat mass were evaluated at 2 time points (mean interval, 16mo). Bone loss was significantly greater in paretic forearms than in nonparetic forearms (p=0.001) and in patients having suffered strokes more recently (p=0.015). We found no difference between paretic and nonparetic femurs. Femoral bone loss was significantly greater in patients using anticoagulants or anticonvulsants (p=0.025) and in those with greater spasticity (p=0.040), regardless of the time since stroke. Our results provide additional evidence that hemiplegic stroke patients have progressive bone loss and that such bone loss is more common in the arms than in the legs. Patients with poststroke hemiplegia should be densitometric monitored mainly in paretic arm and treated for bone loss, with attention to the determinants identified in this study.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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