Context: The ultradistal (UD) radius is rich in trabecular bone and is easily measured by dual energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA). UD radius areal bone mineral density (aBMD) may help identify trabecular bone deficits, but reference data are needed for research and clinical interpretation of this measure. Objective: We developed age-, sex-, and population ancestry-specific reference ranges for UD radius aBMD assessed by DXA and calculated Z-scores. We examined tracking of UD radius aBMD Z-scores over 6 years and determined associations between UD radius aBMD Z-scores and other bone measures by DXA and peripheral quantitative computed tomography. Design: Multicenter longitudinal study. Participants: A total of 2014 (922 males, 22% African American) children ages 5 to 19 years at enrollment who participated in the Bone Mineral Density in Childhood Study. Main Outcome Measure: UD radius aBMD. Results: UD radius aBMD increased nonlinearly with age (P < 0.001) and tended to be greater in males versus females (P = 0.054). Age-, sex-, and ancestry-specific UD radius aBMD reference curves were constructed. UD radius aBMD Z-scores positively associated with Z-scores at other skeletal sites (r = 0.54-0.64, all P < 0.001) and peripheral quantitative computed tomography measures of distal radius total volumetric BMD (r = 0.68, P < 0.001) and trabecular volumetric BMD (r = 0.70, P < 0.001), and was weakly associated with height Z-score (r = 0.09, P = 0.015). UD radius aBMD Z-scores tracked strongly over 6 years, regardless of pubertal stage (r = 0.66-0.69; all P < 0.05). Conclusion: UD radius aBMD Z-scores strongly associated with distal radius trabecular bone density, with marginal confounding by stature. These reference data may provide a valuable resource for bone health assessment in children.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
- Clinical Biochemistry
- Biochemistry, medical