Shieh, A., Ishii, S., Greendale, G. et al.
Osteoporos Int (2019) 30: 2449. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00198-019-05099-z
We assessed whether a bone resorption marker, measured early in the menopause transition (MT), is associated with change in femoral neck size and strength during the MT. Higher levels of bone resorption were associated with slower increases in femoral neck size and faster decreases in femoral neck strength.
Composite indices of the femoral neck’s ability to withstand compressive (compression strength index, CSI) and impact (impact strength index, ISI) forces integrate DXA-derived femoral neck width (FNW), bone mineral density (BMD), and body size. During the menopause transition (MT), FNW increases, and CSI and ISI decrease. This proof-of-concept study assessed whether a bone resorption marker, measured early in the MT, is associated with rates of change in FNW, CSI and ISI during the MT.
We used previously collected bone resorption marker (urine collagen type I N-telopeptide [U-NTX]) and femoral neck strength data from 696 participants from the Study of Women’s Health Across the Nation (SWAN), a longitudinal study of the MT in a multi-ethnic cohort of community-dwelling women.
Adjusted for MT stage (pre- vs. early perimenopause), age, body mass index (BMI), bone resorption marker collection time, and study site in multivariable linear regression, bone resorption in pre- and early perimenopause was not associated with transmenopausal decline rate in femoral neck BMD. However, each standard deviation (SD) increase in bone resorption level was associated with 0.2% per year slower increase in FNW (p = 0.03), and 0.3% per year faster declines in CSI (p = 0.02) and ISI (p = 0.01). When restricted to women in early perimenopause, the associations of bone resorption with change in FNW, CSI, and ISI were similar to those in the full sample.
Measuring a bone resorption marker in pre- and early perimenopause may identify women who will experience the greatest loss in bone strength during the MT.