Developing a novel technique for the efficient, noninvasive clinical evaluation of bone microarchitecture remains both crucial and challenging. The trabecular bone score (TBS) is a new gray-level texture measurement that is applicable to dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA) images. Significant correlations between TBS and standard 3-dimensional (3D) parameters of bone microarchitecture have been obtained using a numerical simulation approach. The main objective of this study was to empirically evaluate such correlations in anteroposterior spine DXA images. Thirty dried human cadaver vertebrae were evaluated. Micro-computed tomography acquisitions of the bone pieces were obtained at an isotropic resolution of 93μm. Standard parameters of bone microarchitecture were evaluated in a defined region within the vertebral body, excluding cortical bone. The bone pieces were measured on a Prodigy DXA system (GE Medical-Lunar, Madison, WI), using a custom-made positioning device and experimental setup. Significant correlations were detected between TBS and 3D parameters of bone microarchitecture, mostly independent of any correlation between TBS and bone mineral density (BMD). The greatest correlation was between TBS and connectivity density, with TBS explaining roughly 67.2% of the variance. Based on multivariate linear regression modeling, we have established a model to allow for the interpretation of the relationship between TBS and 3D bone microarchitecture parameters. This model indicates that TBS adds greater value and power of differentiation between samples with similar BMDs but different bone microarchitectures. It has been shown that it is possible to estimate bone microarchitecture status derived from DXA imaging using TBS.
Copyright © 2011 The International Society for Clinical Densitometry. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.