Bone loss after bariatric surgery: Discordant results between DXA and QCT bone density

Journal of Bone and Mineral Research, 08/12/2013

Several studies, using dual–energy x–ray absorptiometry (DXA), have reported substantial bone loss after bariatric surgery. However, profound weight loss may cause artifactual changes in DXA areal bone mineral density (aBMD) results. Assessment of volumetric bone mineral density (vBMD) by quantitative computed tomography (QCT) may be less susceptible to such artifacts. The authors conclude that moderate vertebral bone loss occurs in the first year after gastric bypass surgery. However, striking declines in DXA aBMD at the proximal femur were not confirmed with QCT vBMD measurements. These discordant results suggest that artifacts induced by large changes in body weight after bariatric surgery affect DXA and/or QCT measurements of bone, particularly at the hip.

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