The Osteoporosis Research Group is currently engaged in two interdisciplinary interventional studies in the area of sports and health with focus on osteoporosis research. The main topic of the Senior Fitness and Prevention Study (SEFIP) – a randomized 18 month exercise study – is to evaluate the impact of physical exercise on medical condition, physical fitness, important risk factors and costs of the health care system. A group of 246 women over 65 are participating. The effect of rehabitational sport exercises (2x/week) including aerobics (20 min; 65-80% HFmax), coordination exercises and body and leg strengthening (25 min/15 min) is compared to the effect of a wellness program including relaxation techniques and a light fitness program (1x/week, 60 min.). All participants are provided with calcium and vitamin D based on an initial analysis of the diet. In respect to osteoporosis risk factors bone density is measured by different methods (DXA, QCT , US ) and at different body regions and the frequency of falls is taken into account by a questionnaire filled out by each participant. In addition to the osteoporosis risk factors also those of cardiovascular diseases like blood lipids, blood pressure, adipose, abdominal fat and girth are investigated. The recording of outpatient and inpatient treatment and costs will show how far the intervention affects the health care systems and if a support of special exercise programs by public authorities is reasonable.
In a second study, the Erlanger Longitudinal Vibrations Study (ELVIS), the impact of “whole body vibrations” applied by a vibration platform is analyzed. 50 women over 65 years old take part in a defined rehab training program in which the strengthening of the legs is done on vibration platforms (25-35 Hz). Topics are the osteoporosis risk factors examined by the bone density (DXA, QCT , US ) and the frequency of falls and the parameters of neuromuscular capacity (strength, speed, balance). The results of this “vibration group” is compared to the data of the SEFIP study both to a group of 50 matched women of the rehab sport program and to a group of 50 matched women of the “wellness group”. This study will make an important contribution to the discussion if special vibration exercises will improve the neuromuscular system and reduce the osteoporosis risk factors. Both studies, SEFIP and ELVIS, are designed according to the regulations of the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE) published on https://register.clinicaltrials.gov .
In the technical area research efforts focus on expanding dual x-ray absorptiometry (DXA) into a 3D method. Within an international collaboration an anatomical atlas of the femur is developed based on the advanced bone segmentation methods developed in Erlangen. The atlas will then be used to reconstruct a 3D dataset from a limited number of 2D projections measured by DXA. For this purpose the DXA scanner of the IMP is the first worldwide capable to handle this new 3D DXA mode. Independent of the progress in DXA the software for 3D QCT of the hip and the spine is used successfully in several clinical studies.
Prof. H.K. Genant, Osteoporosis Research Group, Univ.of California at San Francisco , USA
Prof. J. D. Laredo, Hospital Lariboisière, Assistance Publique, Hopitaux de Paris,
Prof. J Adams, Imaging Science and Biomedical Engineering, University of Manchester
Prof. J. Mayhew, Trueman State University , Missouri , USA
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