Bone mineral density and total body bone mineral content in 18- to 22-year-old women

Almond J. Drake*, David W. Armstrong, K. M.M. Shakir

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


One hundred sixty-four (164) healthy, young Caucasian women enrolled as midshipmen at the United States Naval Academy with no known disease or bone injury were followed for 3.6 years. Change in bone mineral density (BMD) of the hip, lumbar spine and distal tibia, and total body bone mineral content (TBMC) was measured by dual energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA). Bone mineral density and TBMC of these women were measured within 2 months (60 ± 4 days) of entering the Academy and annually. Over the study period, hip BMD increased 2.26% (P < 0.001), lumbar spine BMD increased 3.27% (P < 0.001) and distal tibia BMD increased 5.2% (P < 0.001). Total body bone mineral content showed a 5.25% (P < 0.001) increase during the study period. In this group of young women, gain in BMD and TBMC continued until age 22. These results suggest that bone mass may accrue in certain groups of women beyond age 22. The significance of this increase in bone mass during early adulthood on risk for osteoporotic fractures in later life and its impact on exercise-related bone injuries are unknown and warrant further examination.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1037-1043
Number of pages7
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2004
Externally publishedYes


  • BMD
  • Bone
  • DXA
  • Military
  • Osteoporosis
  • TBMC
  • Women


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