Bone Quantitative Ultrasound and Bone Mineral Density in Children with Celiac Disease

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Objectives:Osteoporosis is the most common manifestation of untreated celiac disease (CD). Bone quantitative ultrasound (QUS) has recently emerged as a new modality for bone status assessment. We evaluated bone status in children with CD using dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry and quantitative ultrasound.Methods:This cross-sectional study included 41 children (13 girls, 28 boys) aged 11.2 ± 3.6 years with CD. All children had been diagnosed with CD for at least 1 year (mean, 5.7 ± 4.3 years). The results of lumbar spine bone mineral density assessed by dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry and the measurements of the velocity of ultrasound wave (at distal radius and midshaft tibia sites), expressed as speed of sound in m/s, were compared between children adherent to gluten-free diet (GFD) and non-compliant children.Results:Speed of sound z-scores at tibia were below −2 SD in 20 of 41 children (49%), whereas lumbar spine bone mineral density z-scores were below −2 SD in 4 of 41 (10%) children with CD (P = 0.0002). Only 19 of 41 children were strictly compliant to GFD. The prevalence of tibia speed of sound z-scores <−2 SD was significantly higher in non-compliant children (15 of 22, 68%) compared with children on GFD (5 of 19, 26%), (P = 0.01). Children non-compliant with GFD had significantly worse tibia speed of sound z-scores (−2.3 ± 1.8, mean ± SD) compared with children on GFD (−1.2 ± 1.5, mean ± SD) (P = 0.04).Conclusions:Children with CD on a gluten-containing diet had higher prevalence of abnormal tibia bone SOS and lower z-scores compared with children on a GFD. These differences were not detected by spinal dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry or radius speed of sound. The value of quantitative ultrasound for screening and follow-up of children with CD should be further evaluated.

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