Effect of pamidronate treatment on vertebral deformity in children with primary osteoporosis. A pilot study using radiographic morphometry

Horm Res. 2004;61(3):137-42. doi: 10.1159/000075589. Epub 2003 Dec 15.


Objective: Bisphosphonates are effectively used in treatment for primary osteoporosis in children. In the present study, we quantitatively evaluated the effect of pamidronate treatment on lumbar vertebrae in children with primary osteoporosis using radiographic morphometry.

Methods: Paired lateral radiographs of the lumbar spine were obtained before and after pamidronate treatment in 5 children with primary osteoporosis. To characterize vertebral deformities, specific morphometrical ratios were calculated for vertebral bodies L1-L4.

Results: Significant reshape of lumbar vertebrae was observed: the concavity index (middle-anterior ratio) decreased from 55 to 36% (p = 0.006), and the anterior-posterior ratio (used as a surrogate of wedge deformity) decreased from 25 to 11% (p = 0.001).

Conclusions: Pamidronate treatment significantly influences the restoration of vertebral fractures in children with primary osteoporosis. The present study demonstrates that radiographic morphometry is a suitable tool for quantitative assessment of the vertebral deformities in childhood.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents / therapeutic use
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Diphosphonates / therapeutic use*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Lumbar Vertebrae / abnormalities*
  • Lumbar Vertebrae / anatomy & histology
  • Male
  • Osteoporosis / drug therapy*
  • Pamidronate


  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents
  • Diphosphonates
  • Pamidronate