Acromegalic patients had low prevalence of vertebral fractures.
Study of qualitative abnormalities of the spine in acromegalic patients.
Acromegalic patient had high prevalence of spinal frank deformations.
Patients with acromegaly appear to be at increased risk of vertebral fractures despite normal bone mineral density. We investigated the prevalence of vertebral fractures in a cohort of acromegalic patients under 80 years of age.
Monocentric cross-sectional study performed at Nantes University Hospital from 1988 to 2018. Fifty patients (18 females, 32 males) with a median age of 52.3 years (range: 27–78) were included. Radiological vertebral fractures were evaluated on conventional lumbar and thoracic spine radiographs using Genant's semiquantitative fracture assessment. We studied qualitative abnormalities of the spine using three criteria: osteophytes, disc-space narrowing and wedge-shaped vertebrae. We analysed bone mineral density and endocrine status.
Three patients (6%) had a vertebral fracture: one grade 1 and two grade 2 according to Genant's assessment, with two osteoporotic and one osteopenic patients. They had no unsubstituted pituitary deficiency. Considering the frank deformations (osteophyte or disc narrowing≥grade 2 or wedge-shaped), the thoracic spine was deformed in 22 patients (44%) and the lumbar spine in 21 patients (42%).
Acromegalic patients had a low prevalence of vertebral fractures but had a significant amount of vertebral deformations. We speculate that this high prevalence of frank deformations could explain the previously reported high prevalence of vertebral fractures.Le texte complet de cet article est disponible en PDF.
Keywords : Acromegaly, Bone, Spine, Spinal fractures, Growth Hormone, Bone density.