Photon Scattering Measurements of Calcaneal Bone Density: Results of in vivo Cross-Sectional Studies
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The density of trabecular bone in the os calcis has been measured in 321 subjects using a gamma ray scattering technique. In normal subjects it was shown that density could be predicted from body weight and age with a standard error of 5.6%. It was also shown that the dependence of density upon weight and age was the same for both sexes. When the os calcis had been subjected to a greater than normal mechanical stress by either increased physical activity or excessive body weight, trabecular bone density was increased. Density was measured in 128 patients in whom the incidence of skeletal demineralization was expected to be greater than that in control subjects. Some significant reductions in density were observed. It is projected that density measurements might be of value in those situations where, in response to metabolic stress, the rate of loss of mineral from trabecular bone is greater than that from cortical bone.
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