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Arthritis Res Ther. 2019 Dec 10;21(1):274. doi: 10.1186/s13075-019-2072-y.

Complex assessment of bone mineral density, fracture risk, vitamin D status, and bone metabolism in Hungarian systemic sclerosis patients.

Author information

1
Division of Rheumatology, Department of Internal Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, University of Debrecen, Debrecen, Hungary.
2
Department of Laboratory Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, University of Debrecen, Debrecen, Hungary.
3
Department of Oncology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Debrecen, Debrecen, Hungary.
4
Division of Rheumatology, Department of Internal Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, University of Debrecen, Debrecen, Hungary. Szekanecz.zoltan@med.unideb.hu.
5
Faculty of Medicine, Department of Rheumatology, University of Debrecen, Nagyerdei str 98, Debrecen, 4032, Hungary. Szekanecz.zoltan@med.unideb.hu.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

We wished to determine bone alterations in systemic sclerosis (SSc) patients by conventional densitometry (DXA), peripheral quantitative computed tomography (pQCT), and bone biomarkers.

METHODS:

We included 44 SSc patients and 33 age-matched healthy controls. Lumbar spine and femoral neck bone mineral density (BMD) was assessed by DXA. Volumetric BMD was measured by pQCT at the radius. FRAX, 25-hydroxyvitamin-D3 (25-OH-D3), parathyroid hormone, osteocalcin, C-terminal collagen telopeptide, and procollagen type I amino-terminal propeptide were also assessed.

RESULTS:

SSc patients had lower L2-4 BMD (0.880 ± 0.108 vs. 0.996 ± 0.181 g/cm2; p = 0.019) and femoral neck (FN) BMD (0.786 ± 0.134 vs. 0.910 ± 0.090 g/cm2; p = 0.007) by DXA. In SSc vs. controls, pQCT indicated lower mean cortical (328.03 ± 103.32 vs. 487.06 ± 42.45 mg/cm3; p < 0.001) and trabecular density (150.93 ± 61.91 vs. 184.76 ± 33.03 mg/cm3; p = 0.037). Vitamin D3 deficiency was more common in SSc vs. controls (60.0% vs. 39.3%; p = 0.003). L2-4 (p = 0.002) and FN BMD (p = 0.015) positively correlated with BMI. pQCT assessments confirmed an inverse correlation between pulmonary manifestation and total (p = 0.024), trabecular (p = 0.035), and cortical density (p = 0.015). Anti-Scl70 positivity inversely correlated with pQCT total density (p = 0.015) and the presence of digital ulcers with cortical density (p = 0.001). We also found that vertebral and FN BMD as determined by DXA significantly correlated with pQCT total, trabecular, and cortical density (p < 0.05).

CONCLUSION:

The results of our study suggest that bone loss in SSc patients may be associated with lower BMI, anti-Scl70 positivity, and the presence of pulmonary manifestations and digital ulcers. Both DXA and pQCT are appropriate tools to evaluate the bone alterations in SSc patients.

KEYWORDS:

Bone loss; DXA; Osteoporosis; Pulmonary manifestations; Scl70; Systemic sclerosis; pQCT

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