Diabetes mellitus is associated with a higher risk of fracture. In this study, we analysed the bone quality of premenopausal women with type 1 diabetes mellitus by microindentation. No differences in bone quality were identified between patients and healthy controls, suggesting that intensive insulin therapy can preserve bone health.
Purpose: To compare the bone quality of women with type 1 diabetes mellitus (T1DM) and healthy controls, and to determine the relationship with bone mineral density (BMD).
Methods: This was a cross-sectional study of 45 premenopausal women with T1DM and 21 healthy controls, matched according to age and BMI. Clinical parameters, BMD and bone tissue mechanical properties (assessed using the bone material strength index [BMSi]) were evaluated in each group using microindentation. In T1DM patients, glycosylated haemoglobin (HbA1c), the number of hypoglycaemic events and the status of chronic complications were also analysed.
Results: No differences in BMSi or BMD between T1DM patients and healthy controls were identified. In the T1DM patients, the mean HbA1c was 7.52% ± 1.00% and the mean time elapsed since diagnosis was 22.6 ± 12.2 years. Eight patients (17.7%) met the criteria for metabolic syndrome (MetS), and microvascular complications were present in 12 patients (26.7%). Neither the number of features of MetS present nor the presence of microangiopathy was found to be associated with BMSi.
Conclusions: T1DM premenopausal patients showed bone tissue properties comparable to those shown by controls. Further larger-scale studies should be conducted to confirm these results.
Keywords: Chronic complications; Fracture risk assessment; Microindentation; Osteoporosis; Type 1 diabetes mellitus.