Comparison of calibrated and uncalibrated bone mineral density by CT to DEXA in menopausal women

Y. Miyabara, D. Holmes, J. Camp, V. M. Miller, A. E. Kearns

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Objective:s Coronary artery disease and osteoporosis increase in women after menopause. Computed tomography (CT) scans of the heart used to evaluate coronary arterial calcification include images of the thoracic vertebrae. The utility of using these images to assess bone health in women remains to be defined. Analyses of thoracic spine volumetric bone mineral density (vBMD) from CT scans of the heart were performed to determine how specific calibration affects the ability to assess vBMD in recently menopausal women and to evaluate how vBMD relates to areal bone mineral density (aBMD) using dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DEXA). Methods: Women (n = 111) enrolled in the Kronos Early Estrogen Prevention Study (KEEPS) at Mayo Clinic underwent a CT scan of the heart that included calibration phantoms and a DEXA of the lumbar spine. The Spine Cancer Assessment program was used to determine vBMD of thoracic vertebrae with and without the calibration correction. Results: Trabecular bone vBMD at T8 averaged 163.57±28.58 and 157.94±27.55 mg/cc (mean±standard deviation, SD) for calibrated and uncalibrated values, respectively. The relationship between calibrated and uncalibrated measures approached unity (R = 0.98). Lumbar spine (L2-4) aBMD was 1.19±0.16 g/cm2 (mean±SD). Both calibrated and uncalibrated thoracic vBMD correlated positively and significantly with lumbar aBMD, but the relationship was less than unity (R=0.63). Conclusion Uncalibrated measures of thoracic spine vBMD obtained from CT scans of the heart may provide clinically relevant information about bone health and osteoporosis/osteopenia risk in recently menopausal women.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)374-381
Number of pages8
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 2012



ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Obstetrics and Gynecology


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