The clinical utility of lateral bone mineral density (BMD) measurement for the diagnosis of osteoporosis remains controversial. Since both posterior-anterior (PA) spine and hip scans are universally performed, the true clinical utility of lateral dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA) should lie in its ability to detect low bone mass independent of both PA spine and hip. We examined lateral, PA and hip BMDs in 2134 referred Caucasian females aged 25-89 using the Hologic 2000. Compared only to PA scans, the additional percentages of women with very low BMD (T-score below -2.5 utilizing the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey [NHANES] III normative database) on lateral were 7.3, 16.4, 28.2, 33.7, and 26.2% for age groups 25-49, 50-59, 60-69, 70-79, and 80-89, respectively. When the results from both PA and total hip measurements were combined, lower but still significant percentages were found: 5.4, 14.9, 24.4, 26.6, and 17.8% for age groups 25-49, 50-59, 60-69, 70-79, and 80-89, respectively. Utilizing the original Hologic normative database, the additional yield in women with a non-osteoporotic PA spine and femoral neck was quite low: 4.6, 8.5, 13.3, 10.0, and 2.5% for women age 25-49, 50-59, 60-69, 70-79, and 80-89, respectively. Thus, the lateral scans now add more additional patients into the very low BMD category. Whether the relationship to future fracture risk of low BMD and T-scores on lateral is similar to that of PA spine remains to be established.
- Bone densitometry
- Lateral BMD
- Postmenopausal women
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
- Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging