Quantitative tibial ultrasonometry versus radiographic phalangeal absorptiometry in a Caucasian pediatric population

M H Lequin, R R van Rijn, S G Robben, W J van Leeuwen, W C Hop, C van Kuijk

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There is a need for a reliable bone assessment technique in children. In this study, we compare an existing technique used in children, radiographic absorptiometry (RA), with a relatively novel technique, quantitative tibial ultrasonometry (QUS). In a prospective cohort study, we enrolled 290 girls (mean age 12.7 years) and 273 boys (mean age 12.4 years). Radiographs of the left hand and the left index finger were taken with an aluminium reference wedge within the field of exposure. Radiographic absorptiometry on the second middle phalanx at the mid-level (BMD50%) and proximal quarter (BMD25%) was performed with interactive software. Tibial QUS was performed using the SoundScan Compact. Multiple regression analysis showed that SOS correlated significantly with BMD25% for both boys (r = 0.65, P < 0.001) and girls (r = 0.59, P < 0.001), taking into account age and gender. The same applied for the correlation between speed of sound (SOS) and BMD50% in boys (r = 0.62, P < 0.001) and girls (r = 0.67, P < 0.001). Cubic regression between calendar age and BMD25% showed the best fit for both boys (r2 = 0.60) and girls (r2 = 0.60). For BMD50% a difference in regression was found between boys and girls. Quadratic regression gave a satisfactory fit for boys (r2 = 0.61 ) whereas for girls, a cubic relation was best (r2 = 0.59). Overall, there was a significant correlation between BMD25% and BMD50% for boys r = 0.89 and for girls r = 0.91 (both P < 0.001). Our data show a significant correlation between two different bone assessment techniques. In addition, these data suggest that both tibial ultrasonometry and RA are useful techniques in children.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)323-9
Number of pages7
JournalCalcified Tissue International
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2001

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