Objectives: Osteoporosis and increased pulse wave velocity (PWV) are cardiovascular risk factors. We investigated the relationship between PWV and bone mass in the lumbar spine in postmenopausal women.
Methods: We studied the PWV in 95 women; 38 postmenopausal women with normal spinal bone mineral density (BMD), 32 osteopenic postmenopausal women, and 25 osteoporotic postmenopausal women. The brachial-ankle PWV (baPWV) was measured using an automated device. The BMD of the lumbar spine (L2-L4) was measured using dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry.
Results: After adjusting for age and years since menopause, women with osteoporosis had a significantly higher baPWV than those with normal BMD (1500 +/- 220 cm/s versus 1340 +/- 215 cm/s; P < 0.05), but no significant differences in baPWV were seen between the osteoporotic and osteopenic groups or between the osteopenic and normal BMD groups. In univariate regression analysis, the baPWV was significantly negatively correlated with BMD (r = -0.450, P < 0.01), and significantly positively correlated with age (r = 0.601, P < 0.01), years since menopause (r = 0.577, P < 0.01), systolic blood pressure (r = 0.295, P < 0.01), and diastolic blood pressure (r = 0.264, P < 0.05), but was not with other variables. In multivariate regression analysis, the baPWV was significantly correlated with BMD (P < 0.05), but not with other variables.
Conclusions: Postmenopausal women with osteoporosis may have elevated arterial stiffness, suggesting that osteoporotic postmenopausal women may have a higher risk of cardiovascular disease.