Background: The reported association between vitamin D level and loss of Bone mineral densitometry measurements (BMD) has been controversial.
Objective: The objectıve of the current study was to determine whether low vitamin D level and BMD are associated with depresive symptoms as burden in Arab women during the menopausal and postmenopausal period.
Design and setting: A cross-sectional descriptive study design was used at the Primary Health Care (PHC) Centers in Qatar.
Subjects: A multi-stage sampling design was used and a representative sample of 1436 women aged 45-65 years were included during July 2012 and November 2013 and 1106 women agreed to participate (77.2%) and responded to the study.
Materials and methods: BMD (g/m(2)) was assessed at the BMD unit using a Lunar Prodigy DXA system (Lunar Corp., Madison, WI). The antero-posterior lumbar spine (L2-L4) and the mean of the proximal right and left femur were be measured by two technician and then reviewed by one radiologist. Data on body mass index (BMI), clinical biochemistry variables including serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D were collected. The Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) was administered for depression purposes.
Results: Of the 1436 women living in urban and rural areas, 1106 women agreed to participate (77.0%) and responded to the study. The mean age and standard deviation of the subjects was 53.8 ± 3.2. The median age of natural menopausal in the present study was 49 years (mean and standard deviation 49.5 ± 3.1 and postmenopausal was 58.1 ± 3.3). There were statistically significant differences between menopausal stages with regards to ethnicity, education level, systolic and dialostic blood pressure, parity, sheesha smoking and depressive symptoms. Overall 30.4% of women were affected with osteopenia/osteoporosis in premenopausal and postmenopausal (24.4% vs 35.7%; P = 0.0442). Osteopenia in premenopausal and postmenopausal (18.7% vs 29.3%; P = 0.030) and Osteoporosis (9.9% vs 15.9%; P = 0.049) were significantly higher in post-menopausal women than in premenopausal women (P = 0.046). Similarly, vitamin D deficiency was more prevalent among postmenopausal women than menopausal women. Overall, only 15.1% of women had optimum vitamin D level and 15.5% had severe, 33.2% had moderate vitamin D insufficiency and 36.3% had mild vitamin D insufficiency in menopausal and post menopausal women (P = 0.021). The study revealed that vitamin D level, hemoglobin level, serum iron fasting plasma glucose, calcium, triglycerides, high density lipid (HDL) cholesterol, low density lipid (LDL) Cholesterol, alkaline phosphate and magnesium were considerably lower in postmenopausal compared to menopausal women (P < 0.001).
Conclusion: The current study revealed that there was a strong association between vitamin D level and BMD in Arab women during the menopausal and post-menopausal period.
Keywords: Bone mineral density; depression; disease; menopausal; physical activity; postmenopausal; vitamin D.