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Contraception. 1997 Feb;55(2):87-90.

Effects on bone mineral density of low-dosed oral contraceptives compared to and combined with physical activity.

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Department of Preventive and Rehabilitative Sports Medicine, Technical University of Munich, Klinikum rechts der Isar, Germany.


A cross-sectional study was designed to examine the influence of exercise compared to and in combination with low-dosed oral contraceptives (OCs) on bone mineral density (BMD). One hundred twenty-eight women (20 to 35 years of age) were assigned to four groups with respect to the years of exercise and OC intake. Influence factors were determined by a detailed questionnaire and interview. BMD for L2-4 and the femoral neck was assessed by DXA. The highest BMD values were found in the group of women characterized by long-term exercise (9.45 +/- 4.32 yr) and short use of OC (1.6 +/- 1.69 yr). No beneficial effect of exercise on BMD was found in the group with a long exercise period (10.4 +/- 4.14 yr) and long-term intake of OC (8.2 +/- 4.14 yr). Differences in mean BMD values between the two groups were significant in all regions assessed (p < 0.05). No differences in mean BMD were found in the groups with short-term exercise but long or brief histories of OC. The question arises as to whether active women taking low-dosed OC at an earlier age will develop an adequate BMD.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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