Document Type : Original Article



Background: The Index used for osteoporosis detection was BMD measured in L2
, L3
, and L4
vertebrae. We compared the density of the vertebrae to select the one with maximum change
in the density for decreasing the cost and the time. Methods and Materials: Ninety seven
osteoporotic post-menopausal women with a mean age of 61.78 ± 8.48 (50 - 86) years and
a mean body mass index (BMI) of 24.75 ± 2.66 (kg/m2
) (18 - 30) without any known diseases
and on any medication affecting bone mineral density (BMD) were examined at osteoporosis
section of a teaching hospital. The vertebral bodies (L2 - L4
) of participants were measured
by using a dual energy X-ray absorptiometry system (DEXA). To investigate if the BMD
measurement of a single vertebra could replace the total L2 -
 measurement, the mean BMDs
and the correlations of the L2 -
 were compared. Results: Among the 97 studied women, the
mean BMI was 24.75 ± 2.66. The mean BMD of L2
, L3
, and L4
 vertebrae were 0.7199, 0.7258,
and 0.7402, respectively. There was no significant difference between the mean BMD of L2
 vertebrae (P > 0.05), suggesting a strong relationship between L2
 and L3
. The mean BMD
in the L4
 vertebra was significantly higher than the other two vertebrae (P < 0.05), Statistical
analysis showed that the BMD in all three L2
, L3
, and L4
 vertebrae were associated with BMI
(r > 0 and P < 0.05), but there was no significant relationship between BMD and age in the
three L2
, L3
, and L4
 vertebrae (r ≅ 0 and P > 0.05). Conclusion: Since the mean BMDs of L2
and L3
 were not significantly different, and due to a very high correlation between L2
 and L3
, we
recommend the measurement of L2
 rather than L2 - L4
 in order to save patient scanning time,
cost, and the patient X-ray exposure.


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