Objective: Total gastrectomy often results in postgastrectomy bone disease with decreased bone mass and increased fracture risk. To further elucidate the mechanisms of postgastrectomy bone disease, the authors investigated calcium metabolism and bone mineral density after total gastrectomy in pigs.
Summary background data: Postgastrectomy bone disease can present as osteomalacia, osteoporosis in excess of normal aging, or a combination of both. The underlying mechanisms are insufficiently understood and need further investigation.
Methods: Growing minipigs were gastrectomized and compared with fed-matched, sham-operated control p gs for 1 year. Calcium absorption, serum calcium, parathyroid hormone, 25-(OH)-vitamin D, 1,25-(OH)2-vitamin D, alkaline phosphatase, and computed tomography bone mineral density were measured in three monthly intervals.
Results: Total gastrectomy resulted in impaired calcium absorption, reduced serum calcium and 25-(OH)-vitamin D, increased parathyroid hormone and 1,25-(OH)2-vitamin, and reduced bone mineral density compared with fed-matched, sham-operated control pigs.
Conclusions: The authors data indicate that a reduced serum calcium activates counter-regulatory mechanisms, resulting in calcium mobilization from the bone. Possibly, calcium and vitamin D supplementation after total gastrectomy might prevent postgastrectomy bone mass loss.