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Table 1 Studies since 2010 examining the association between systemic bone mineral density (BMD) and tibiofemoral cartilage

From: Associations between systemic bone mineral density and early knee cartilage changes in middle-aged adults without clinical knee disease: a prospective cohort study

Author year Study population BMD site and value (mean (SD), g/cm2) Main results
 Cross-sectional study
  Brennan 2011 [16] N = 160 (100% female)
Asymptomatic participants
Age 29–50 years, mean (SD) 41.4 (5.3) years
BMI 27.6 (6.4) kg/m2
Spine 1.263 (0.150)
Total body 1.178 (0.078)
Femoral neck 1.008 (0.137)
Ward’s triangle 0.915 (0.152)
Trochanter 0.840 (0.112)
Ultra-distal forearm 0.331 (0.043)
Mid forearm 0.712 (0.052)
Spine, total body, and femoral neck BMD were positively associated with medial and lateral cartilage volume. Spine BMD was positively associated with the presence of medial compartment cartilage defects, and forearm BMD was positively associated with the prevalence of lateral compartment cartilage defects
  Berry 2011 [17] N = 153 (81% female)
Predominantly healthy participants
Age 25–60 years, mean (SD) men 46 (9), women 47 (10) years
BMI, men 30 (8), women 33 (9) kg/m2
Total body, men 1.282 (0.10), women 1.228 (0.10) Total body BMD was positively associated with medial and lateral tibial cartilage volume in men and women
 Cohort study
  Nevitt 2010 [2] N = 1754 (63.0% female)
Participants with knee OA or at high risk of developing knee OA
Age 50–79 years, mean (SD) 63.2 (7.8) years
BMI 29.9 (5.4) kg/m2
Whole body, men 1.11 (0.11), women 0.94 (0.09)
Femoral neck, men 0.84 (0.13), women 0.77 (0.12)
In knees without knee OA, higher femoral neck and whole body BMD were associated with increases in grade of joint space narrowing. In knees with existing knee OA, progression was not significantly related to BMD
  Lee 2013 [26] N = 127 (59% female)
Symptomatic knee OA and Kellgren Lawrence grade ≥2
Age >45 years, mean (SD) 62.7 (8.6) years
BMI 30.1 (5.4) kg/m2
2 years follow up
Femoral neck 0.95 (0.14) There were no significant associations between baseline BMD and cartilage volume or thickness
Longitudinal BMD loss was associated with loss of femoral and tibial cartilage volume and thickness
  Cao 2014 [1] N = 158 (48% female)
Randomly selected subjects; 69 without radiographic OA and 89 with radiographic OA
Age mean (SD) 62.6 (7.2) years
BMI 27.4 (4.1) kg/m2
2.7 years follow up
Total body 1.08 (0.16)
Total hip 0.98 (0.17)
Spine 1.02 (0.20)
Cross-sectional analysis: total body, total hip, and spine BMD were positively associated with femoral and lateral tibial cartilage thickness in subjects with OA
Longitudinal analysis: high total body BMD was associated with an increase in femoral cartilage thickness; high spine BMD was associated with increases in femoral and lateral tibial cartilage thickness in subjects with OA
No significant associations were observed in subjects without OA
  1. BMI body mass index, OA osteoarthritis