VFA Adds Acuracy to DXA Testing

March 21, 2013 Leave your thoughts

Vertebral Fracture Assessment (VFA) identifies many persons with Clinical Osteoporosis who are missed by DXA testing alone.  How many?  I reviewed my first 941 patients to have VFA with their DXA (Feb 2010 – Sept 2012).  I was amazed.

25% of the total had at least one Genant grade 2 or 3 Vertebral Deformity on VFA but were not identified as Osteoporosis by DXA.  This is Clinical Osteoporosis missed by DXA alone in 25% of my total patients.

As an orthopedic surgeon, my main concern has been bone quality.  Poor bone quality (“mush for bone”) is a big deal when you are placing screws and other implants.  Vertebral compression fracture deformities found on VFA have been a more accurate warning of “mush for bone” than BMD by DXA.

“Mush for bone” also predicts fractures

Today I am presenting the full study to the International Society for Clinical Densitometry (ISCD) Annual Meeting & Position Development Conference.  I hope to generate discussion.  Clearly we need a larger study of many thousands of individuals to better study this issue.

Jay Ginther, MD

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