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Osteoporos Int. 2016 Jan;27(1):127-33. doi: 10.1007/s00198-015-3222-y. Epub 2015 Jul 18.

Trabecular bone score in type 1 diabetes--a cross-sectional study.

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Department of Internal Medicine III, Erlanger Allee 101, Jena University Hospital, 07747, Jena, Germany.
Department of Internal Medicine III, Erlanger Allee 101, Jena University Hospital, 07747, Jena, Germany.
Institute of Medical Statistics, Computer Sciences and Documentation, Jena University Hospital, Jena, Germany.
Bone Disease Unit, University of Lausanne, Lausanne, Switzerland.


Trabecular bone score (TBS) seems to provide additive value on BMD to identify individuals with prevalent fractures in T1D. TBS did not significantly differ between T1D patients and healthy controls, but TBS and HbA1c were independently associated with prevalent fractures in T1D. A TBS cutoff <1.42 reflected prevalent fractures with 91.7 % sensitivity and 43.2 % specificity.


Type 1 diabetes (T1D) increases the risk of osteoporotic fractures. TBS was recently proposed as an indirect measure of bone microarchitecture. This study aimed at investigating the TBS in T1D patients and healthy controls. Associations with prevalent fractures were tested.


One hundred nineteen T1D patients (59 males, 60 premenopausal females; mean age 43.4 ± 8.9 years) and 68 healthy controls matched for gender, age, and body mass index (BMI) were analyzed. The TBS was calculated in the lumbar region, based on two-dimensional (2D) projections of DXA assessments.


TBS was 1.357 ± 0.129 in T1D patients and 1.389 ± 0.085 in controls (p = 0.075). T1D patients with prevalent fractures (n = 24) had a significantly lower TBS than T1D patients without fractures (1.309 ± 0.125 versus 1.370 ± 0.127, p = 0.04). The presence of fractures in T1D was associated with lower TBS (odds ratio = 0.024, 95 % confidence interval (CI) = 0.001-0.875; p = 0.042) but not with age or BMI. TBS and HbA1c were independently associated with fractures. The area-under-the curve (AUC) of TBS was similar to that of total hip BMD in discriminating T1D patients with or without prevalent fractures. In this set-up, a TBS cutoff <1.42 discriminated the presence of fractures with a sensitivity of 91.7 % and a specificity of 43.2 %.


TBS values are lower in T1D patients with prevalent fractures, suggesting an alteration of bone strength in this subgroup of patients. Reliable TBS cutoffs for the prediction of fracture risk in T1D need to be determined in larger prospective studies.


Bone; Fracture; Trabecular bone score; Type 1 diabetes

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