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J Bone Miner Res. 1997 Nov;12(11):1922-35.

Bone mass and hip axis length in healthy Asian, black, Hispanic, and white American youths.

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Department of Pediatrics, Stanford University School of Medicine, California, USA.


The primary objective of this study was to examine the associations of ethnicity, diet (calcium, protein, energy), and weight-bearing activity with dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA)-measured bone mass and hip axis length (HAL) in 423 Asians, blacks, Hispanics, and non-Hispanic Caucasians, aged 9-25 years. Bone mass was expressed as bone mineral content (BMC), bone mineral density (BMD), and bone mineral apparent density (BMAD). The data were analyzed using multiple linear regression, after stratifying for gender and pubertal stage and adjusting for height and weight. With few exceptions, Asians and Hispanics had comparable bone mass to whites at all pubertal stages. Greater femoral neck BMAD in black than white females was observed at all pubertal stages. Black males displayed greater BMD and BMAD than white males at all sites in early puberty and at the femoral neck in maturity. Calcium was positively and protein negatively related to BMAD at the femoral neck in early pubertal females. Among males, calcium was negatively associated with whole body BMC and BMD and spine BMD and BMAD in midpuberty. Weight-bearing activity was not associated with bone mass in females; in males, it was positively related only to femoral neck BMC in early puberty. There was an absence of evidence for ethnic differences in HAL among females. In males, we observed shorter HAL in mature Asians and blacks than whites. Neither diet nor activity was associated with HAL.

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