Perimenopausal bone histomorphometry before and after menopause

Robert R. Recker, Joan M. Lappe, Michael Davies, Donald Kimmel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Investigators and clinicians have had few normal bone histomorphometry data available to compare with those found in diseased patients, or in the results of treatments. The Goals and Objectives of this work are two-fold: 1. to present static and dynamic bone histomorphometry data from transilial bone biopsies performed on 76 healthy, premenopausal women. 2. To present paired static and dynamic bone histomorphometry data from bone biopsies on a subset (N = 51 pairs) of these same healthy women whose biopsies were repeated 12 months after their last menses. Statistical comparisons between the pre- and postmenopausal data are presented. These data will shrink this important gap, both for clinicians and investigators. We enrolled 76 healthy, premenopausal women over age 46, performed transilial bone biopsies after tetracycline labeling, and during a period of 9.5 years, we re-biopsied 51 of them who passed through menopause and remained healthy the entire time. We also obtained serum biochemical measurements, and serial DXA exams during the period of observation. The dynamic bone histomorphometry demonstrated a doubling of bone remodeling, and increases in serum bone markers at the time of the second biopsy. Lumbar spine bone density also declined, and there were significant correlations between serum markers and histomorphometry variables. The data demonstrate that healthy menopause results in an important increase in bone remodeling, and a loss of bone density. We do not fully understand the mechanisms of these transmenopausal changes, but the data provide some clues that are helpful.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)55-61
Number of pages7
StatePublished - Mar 2018

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Histology
  • Physiology


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