1998 Clinical and Scientific Meeting

L Hoskin, .P. Clifton-Bligh, G Fulcher, R Hansen.

Royal North Shore Hospital,
Sydney, NSW

Bone Mineral Density in Prenemopausal Nulliparous Women with CFS Compared to Healthy Age, Weight Matched Controls

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) is a condition associated with marked inability to undertake normal physical activity or perform exercise. There is no literature on the effect of inactivity on bone mineral density in premenopausal women with CFS. This cross sectional study aims to investigate bone density in nulliparous women who have chronic fatigue syndrome compared to asymptomatic age and weight matched controls. Thirty seven (37) nulliparous women, mean age 25 years (range 16-38) who met the Oxford Criteria for diagnosis of CFS, and 20 normal controls, mean age 24 years (range 16-36) who were not taking oral oestrogen had bone density measured at the hip, spine and forearm, together with total bone mineral content and body composition, using the Norland Bone Mineral Densitometer.

Patients with CFS had significantly lower lean muscle mass (LMM) than control subjects (34.52kg vs 38.15kg p < 0.01) and significantly lower bone mineral density at the trochanter (0.71 ± 0.09 vs 0.81 ± 0.15 p < 0.002), and almost reached significance at the Wards triangle (0.79 ± 0.11 vs 0.89 ± 0.22 p < 0.07). Bone density at other sites measured was not significantly different.

Patients with CFS performed less exercise, as measured on the Mean Exercise Time Activity Score (179.2 ± 41.80 vs. 248.9 ± 42.95 p &LT; 0.0001) and consumed less dietary calcium (428.5 vs 843.6 p <0.03).

In conclusion, a significant difference lean body mass, exercise levels and calcium intake between CFS and control subjects is not reflected in widespread changes in bone mass throughout the skeleton.


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