Effects of age and sex on the strength and cortical thickness of the femoral neck.
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AuthorsCarpenter, R D
Jonsson, B Y
Harris, T B
Lang, T F
MetadataShow full item record
CitationBone. 2011, 48(4):741-7
AbstractA group of 48 men (22 aged 65-75 years, 26 aged 80-90 years) and 59 women (32 aged 65-75 years, 27 aged 80-90 years) were enrolled in the Age, Gene/Environment Susceptibility-Reykjavik study and imaged with in vivo volumetric Quantitative Computed Tomography (QCT) to investigate the effects of age and sex on femoral neck structure and strength. Femoral neck cross-sectional moment of inertia for bending directions near those of standing and walking (I(AP)), bending strength (M(y)), and axial compressive strength (F(y)) were computed at the location of minimum cross-sectional area (minCSA). Local cortical thickness was computed in the inferior femoral neck based on density profiles extending through the cortex of the minCSA femoral neck section. Multivariate models accounting for height, weight, and age group (younger or older) showed that men had a 46% higher M(y) and a 23% higher F(y) than women, while women had a 13% thicker inferior cortex than men. Cortical thickness in the inferoposterior region of the femoral neck was significantly related to bending and axial strength after adjusting for overall volumetric bone mineral density. Both minCSA and I(AP) were higher in the older, gender-pooled age group, but F(y) and M(y) did not differ between the two age groups. The results suggest that age-related expansion of the femoral neck primarily occurs in the superior and inferior directions and helps maintain homeostasis of femoral neck stiffness and strength. The higher bending strength of the male femoral neck may partly explain why elderly men have a lower risk of hip fracture than elderly women.
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