Trochanteric soft tissue thickness and hip fracture in older men

Carrie M. Nielson, Mary L. Bouxsein, Sinara S. Freitas, Kristine E. Ensrud, Eric S. Orwoll

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

51 Scopus citations


Background: Greater thickness of the tissue extending laterally from the greater trochanter has been associated with a lower risk of hip fracture in women. The effect of trochanteric soft tissue thickness on the risk of incident hip fracture has not been evaluated in men. Methods: We measured trochanteric soft tissue thickness by dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry for all incident hip fracture cases (n = 70) and 222 randomly selected noncases in older men (≥65 yr) enrolled in the Osteoporotic Fractures in Men (MrOS) Study. Differences in tissue thickness between cases and controls were examined. Changes in fall force and factor-of-risk (the ratio of force from a sideways fall to femoral bone strength) associated with tissue thickness were determined. The relative risk for incident hip fracture per SD decrease in tissue thickness was calculated. Results: Mean trochanteric soft tissue thickness did not differ significantly between cases and noncases (29.1 ± 11.9 vs 31.0 ± 11.5 mm; P = 0.2). Although increased tissue thickness reduced both the estimates of fall force and the factor-of-risk, tissue thickness was not associated with the risk of hip fracture (age- and bone mineral density-adjusted relative risk per SD decrease in tissue thickness = 0.90; 95% confidence interval, 0.70-1.16). Conclusions: In this study of elderly community-dwelling men, we found no significant association between trochanteric soft tissue thickness and incident hip fracture. Trochanteric soft tissue thickness in these men was less than previously reported in older women and may explain the difference between these results and those reported in women.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)491-496
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2009

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The Osteoporotic Fractures in Men (MrOS) Study is supported by National Institutes of Health (NIH) funding. The following institutes provide support: the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin, the National Institute on Aging, the National Center for Research Resources, and NIH Roadmap for Medical Research under the following Grants: U01 AR45580, U01 AR45614, U01 AR45632, U01 AR45647, U01 AR45654, U01 AR45583, U01 AG18197, U01-AG027810, and UL1 RR024140.


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