What is it about?

Many with scoliosis are excluded from osteoporosis clinical trials which further compounds the problem of gathering relevant data. The lack of prior investigations might stem from tedious work required by clinicians / radiologists to identify / quantify scoliosis measurements. Providers who treat patients with osteoporosis are confronted regularly with questions about the impact of scoliosis on their skeletal health. We wanted to find out if osteoporosis is a major mediator of degenerative scoliosis and found out that it is unlikely to be.

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Why is it important?

Scoliosis includes symptoms that overlap with those of osteoporosis including back Pain, lower quality of life, spine deformity, and height loss. At least one third of post-menopausal women are estimated to have degenerative scoliosis , and yet little information exists about its relationship with osteoporosis, another condition that afflicts bone and rises with aging.


This work investigating the relationship between degenerative scoliosis and postmenopausal osteoporosis is of clinical impact due to the high prevalence of both of these in the aging population and the fact that scoliosis significantly impacts measurement of bone density , bone health, and interpretation of spine imaging studies. While we found that both scoliosis and osteoporosis increase with aging, we did not identify osteoporosis as a mediator of degenerative scoliosis.

Dr Maya Styner
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Department of Medicine, Division of Endocrinology

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: Lumbar scoliosis in postmenopausal women increases with age but is not associated with osteoporosis, Journal of the Endocrine Society, February 2021, Endocrine Society, DOI: 10.1210/jendso/bvab018.
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