Aim: The aim of the study was to compare the bone mineral density (BMD) and body composition between ambulatory male MSers and control subjects and to evaluate the relationships among body composition, motor disability, glucocorticoids (GC) or steroid use, and bone health.
Results: Compared to age-matched controls, MSers had a significantly lower total body bone mineral content (TBBMC) and BMD at all measured sites except for the radius. Sixty five male MSers (62.5 %) met the criteria for osteopenia and twenty six of them (25 %) for osteoporosis. The multivariate analysis showed a consistent dependence of bone measures (except whole body BMD) on BMI. The total leg lean mass % was as an independent predictor of TBBMC. The Expanded Disability Status Scale (EDSS), cumulative GC dose and age were independent determinants for BMD of the proximal femur.
Conclusions: Decreasing mobility in male MSers is associated with an increasing degree of osteoporosis and muscle wasting in the lower extremities. The chronic low-dose steroid (GC) treatment further contributes to bone loss.