Structural scoliosis in osteoporotic women

Clin Orthop Relat Res. 1985 May;(195):216-23.


Fifty women (mean age 69 +/- 5 years) with biopsy-proven osteoporosis and back pain were radiographically studied for scoliosis, kyphosis, and compression fractures. Twenty-four (48%) osteoporotics had at least 10 degrees of structural scoliosis. Curves were indistinguishable from those of idiopathic scoliosis. Lumbar and thoracolumbar curves were most common. The kyphosis averaged 70 degrees +/- 17 degrees and spanned 9.8 +/- 1.75 vertebrae. Forty-seven patients had 140 compression fractures. Fractures occurred within, but were usually not the cause of, scoliotic curves. Scoliosis in elderly women is a clinical marker and may be a risk factor for osteoporosis and compression fractures. Adult scoliotic patients should be evaluated for osteoporosis with iliac bone biopsies and aggressively treated.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Female
  • Fractures, Spontaneous / complications*
  • Fractures, Spontaneous / diagnostic imaging
  • Humans
  • Kyphosis / complications
  • Kyphosis / diagnostic imaging
  • Lumbar Vertebrae / injuries*
  • Menopause
  • Osteoporosis / complications*
  • Radiography
  • Scoliosis / complications*
  • Scoliosis / diagnostic imaging
  • Thoracic Vertebrae / injuries*