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Open access

Vikram V Shanbhogue, René Klinkby Støving, Katrine Hartmund Frederiksen, Stine Hanson, Kim Brixen, Jeppe Gram, Niklas Rye Jørgensen and Stinus Hansen

Objective, design and methods

Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RYGB) has proved successful in attaining sustained weight loss but may lead to metabolic bone disease. To assess impact on bone mass and structure, we measured a real bone mineral density at the hip and spine by dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry, and volumetric BMD (vBMD) and bone microarchitecture at the distal radius and tibia by high-resolution peripheral quantitative CT in 25 morbidly obese subjects (15 females, 10 males) at 0, 12 and 24 months after RYGB. Bone turnover markers (BTMs), calciotropic and gut hormones and adipokines were measured at the same time points.


After a 24.1% mean weight loss from baseline to month 12 (P < 0.001), body weight plateaued from month 12 to 24 (−0.9%, P = 0.50). However, cortical and trabecular vBMD and microarchitecture deteriorated through the 24 months, such that there was a 5 and 7% reduction in estimated bone strength at the radius and tibia respectively (both P < 0.001). The declines observed in the first 12 months were matched or exceeded by declines in the 12- to 24-month period. While a significant increase in BTMs and decrease in leptin and insulin were seen at 24 months, these changes were maximal at month 12 and stabilized from month 12 to 24.


Despite weight stabilization and maintenance of metabolic parameters, bone loss and deterioration in bone strength continued and were substantial in the second year. The clinical importance of these changes in terms of increased risk of developing osteoporosis and fragility fractures remain an important concern.

Free access

Vikram V Shanbhogue, Stinus Hansen, Morten Frost, Niklas Rye Jørgensen, Anne Pernille Hermann, Jan Erik Henriksen and Kim Brixen

Objective and design

Patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2D) have an increased fracture risk despite a normal or elevated bone mineral density (BMD). The aim of this cross-sectional in vivo study was to assess parameters of peripheral bone microarchitecture, estimated bone strength and bone remodeling in T2D patients with and without diabetic microvascular disease (MVD+ and MVD− respectively) and to compare them with healthy controls.


Fifty-one T2D patients (MVD+ group: n=25) were recruited from Funen Diabetic Database and matched for age, sex and height with 51 healthy subjects. High-resolution peripheral quantitative tomography (HR-pQCT) was used to assess bone structure at the non-dominant distal radius and tibia. Estimated bone strength was calculated using finite element analysis. Biochemical markers of bone turnover were measured in all participants.


After adjusting for BMI, MVD+ patients displayed lower cortical volumetric BMD (P=0.02) and cortical thickness (P=0.02) and higher cortical porosity at the radius (P=0.02) and a trend towards higher cortical porosity at the tibia (P=0.07) compared to controls. HR-pQCT parameters did not differ between MVD− and control subjects. Biochemical markers of bone turnover were significantly lower in MVD+ and MVD− patients compared to controls (all P<0.01). These were no significant correlations between disease duration, glycemic control (average glycated hemoglobin over the previous 3 years) and HR-pQCT parameters.


Cortical bone deficits are not a characteristic of all T2D patients but of a subgroup characterized by the presence of microvascular complications. Whether this influences fracture rates in these patients needs further investigation.

Open access

Stinus Hansen, Niklas Rye Jørgensen, Anne Pernille Hermann and Rene Klinkby Støving


Roux-en-Y-gastric bypass (RYGB) surgery is an effective treatment for morbid obesity. A possible overlooked side effect is negative bone metabolic consequences.


A seven-year prospective study following ten women and seven men after RYGB (baseline mean age 43 ± 8 years, BMI 42 ± 6 kg/m2).


Lumbar spine and total hip bone mineral density (BMD) using dual energy x-ray absorptiometry, distal radius and tibia bone geometry, volumetric BMD, microarchitecture and finite element estimated bone strength using high-resolution peripheral quantitative CT and biochemical markers of bone remodelling were assessed at baseline, 2 and 7 years.


Compared to baseline, body weight was 24 ± 10% lower after 2 years and 21 ± 11% after 7 years. During the 7 years of follow-up, radius and tibia vBMD had declined 13 ± 8% and 8 ± 7% from baseline to 2 years and further 10 ± 7% and 7 ± 8% from 2 to 7 years (all P < 0.001). At both radius and tibia, cortical thickness declined and cortical porosity increased. From baseline to 7 years, there were clear indications of deteriorations of the trabecular network with fewer, more widely spaced and more in-homogeneously distributed trabeculae in both radius and tibia. Overall, declines in estimated bone strength of 16 ± 9% in radius and 16 ± 7% in tibia were observed (both P < 0.001).


Seven years after RYGB, evidence of continuous declines in BMD and ongoing deterioration of bone microarchitecture and reduced estimated bone strength compared to baseline and 2 years post-surgery results were found. These findings emphasize the need for regular assessment of bone health in patients with prior RYGB.