Is There a Link Between Atherosclerosis and Osteoporosis in Men with Type 2 Diabetes?

Atherosclerosis is commonly seen in people with type 2 diabetes, and some data have shown a connection between atherosclerosis and osteoporosis.

Distressed man with diabetes word spelled out before himResearchers from Brazil examined the link between osteoporosis and clinical and metabolic factors as well as chronic diabetes complications.

The results of their study were published online in November 2011 in the article “Association between vascular calcification and osteoporosis in men with type 2 diabetes.” It will soon appear in the Journal of Clinical Densitometry.

A total of 59 men who have diabetes were involved in the study. Study participants were between 50 and 80 years old. The research team assessed their bone health using dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry (DXA).

The research team found that in the lumbar spine:

  • 10.2% of the participants had osteoporosis
  • 45.8% had osteopenia

They also discovered that in the femoral neck:

  • 11.8% had osteoporosis
  • 49% had osteopenia

Furthermore, the researchers found that in these men, there was a significant link between osteoporosis in the lumbar spine (L1-L4) (p=0.004) and in the femoral neck (p=0.036) with iliac artery calcification.

Researchers concluded that although there was a positive link between iliac artery calcification and osteoporosis in men with type 2 diabetes, there was no association with any of the other metabolic factors, clinical factors, or chronic diabetes complications that were evaluated. The only exception was the link between a previous personal history of fractures (p=0.016) and low bone mineral density that was found in the femoral neck.

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