MONDAY, Aug. 17 (HealthDay News) -- Levels of sex steroids such as estradiol and testosterone affect the risk of fractures in elderly men, according to a study published online July 7 in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.
Erin S. LeBlanc, M.D., from Oregon Health & Science University in Portland, and colleagues examined the association between fracture risk and sex steroid levels in 1,738 elderly men plus 342 elderly men who experienced a non-vertebral fracture.
The researchers found that the risk of non-vertebral fractures was highest in men in the lowest quartile of bioavailable estradiol (bioE2, adjusted hazard ratio, 1.5) or highest quartile of sex hormone binding globulin (SHBG, adjusted hazard ratio, 1.4). There was no increased risk in men in the lowest quartile of bioavailable testosterone (bioT) after adjusting for bioE2. In men with high SHBG, low bioT was associated with a higher fracture risk (adjusted hazard ratio, 2.1). The highest risk was in men with low bioE2, low bioT, and high SHBG (adjusted hazard ratio, 3.4).
"Our results suggest that bioavailable sex steroid and SHBG measurements may be useful in the clinical assessment of fracture risk in older men, and that the physiological implications of hypogonadism should be considered in light of possible interactions among sex steroids and SHBG," LeBlanc and colleagues conclude.
Merck and Co., Eli Lilly, and Amgen provided support for the study, and one co-author reported financial ties to these companies.
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