Peripheral osteopenia in adult patients with insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus

Diabet Med. 1995 Oct;12(10):874-9. doi: 10.1111/j.1464-5491.1995.tb00389.x.


Alterations in bone metabolism in diabetes mellitus is a topic of special interest. Bone blood flow is increased in the distal limb of diabetic patients, which is believed to increase osteoclastic activity. We measure bone mineral density using dual-photon absorptiometry in the distal lower limb, the femoral neck, and the lumbar spine in 41 IDDM patients and in 30 control persons. In the diabetic group there was a 10% reduction of bone mineral density in the femoral neck (p < 0.01) and a 12% reduction in the distal limb (p < 0.001) compared with the control group. No significant difference was found in the lumbar spine (p = 0.22). Our data yield incidence for peripheral osteopenia in IDDM-patients, independent of any systemic bone disease such as osteoporosis. A link between decreased bone mineral density and diabetic neuropathy has been observed for the femoral neck (p < 0.001), but not for the distal limb or axial skeleton. Whether there is a common aetiological link or a casual connection between diabetic neuropathy and bone mineral density has still to be determined.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Absorptiometry, Photon
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Albuminuria
  • Body Mass Index
  • Bone Density*
  • Bone Diseases, Metabolic / complications*
  • Bone Diseases, Metabolic / epidemiology
  • Bone Diseases, Metabolic / physiopathology
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Chi-Square Distribution
  • Creatinine / blood
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / complications*
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / physiopathology*
  • Female
  • Femur
  • Glycated Hemoglobin A / analysis
  • Humans
  • Leg
  • Lumbar Vertebrae
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Reference Values
  • Regression Analysis


  • Glycated Hemoglobin A
  • Creatinine