ISSN 1470-3947 (print) | ISSN 1479-6848 (online)

Endocrine Abstracts (2019) 63 GP55 | DOI: 10.1530/endoabs.63.GP55

Acromegaly do not increase the risk of vertebral fractures: a retrospective and prospective study on 50 patients

Clarisse Hochman1, Charlotte Plard2, Maëlle Le Bras1, Benoît Le Goff2, Yves Maugars2, Pascale Guillot2, Bertrand Cariou1 & Delphine Drui1

1L’institut du thorax, Department of Endocrinology, CHU de Nantes, Nantes, France; 2Rheumatology Department, CHU de Nantes, Nantes, France.

Context: Previous studies suggest that patients with acromegaly were at higher risk of vertebral fractures (VFs) despite normal bone mineral density (BMD). However, these patients could have several associated endocrine deficits known to increase the fracture risk, such as hypogonadism. In addition, patients with acromegaly have radiological deformations of the spine, called Erdheim’s syndrome, which can overestimate the radiological VFs.

Objective: Investigate the prevalence of VFs in a cohort of patients with acromegaly.

Methods: It was a monocentric, retrospective and prospective study. Patients with acromegaly under 80 years of age and followed at the Nantes University hospital in January 2018 were included. Patients were excluded if they had a rheumatologic or endocrine disease interfering with the results. The rheumatologic evaluation was less than 3 years for all patients. The prevalence of radiological VFs was evaluated on conventional lombar and thoracic spine radiographs using Genant’s semi quantitative assessment. We studied qualitative abnormalities of the spine using three criteria: osteophytes, disc space narrowing and cuneiform aspect of vertebrae. The X-rays were read by two rheumatologists independently. We analyzed BMD at lumbar spine and total hip, endocrine status and quality of life was investigated by three questionnaires (AcroQol, specific of acromegaly; Oswestry evaluating the functional impact of pain; HAQ evaluating the functional capacity).

Results: Fifty patients (19 females, 31 males) with a median age of 53 (range 28–79) were included. The average of time between the diagnosis of acromegaly and the last rheumatologic evaluation was 9.1 years. Three patients (6.1%) had a VF: 1 grade 1 and 2 grade 2 of Genant’s assessment. 28% patients were osteopenic and 12% were osteoporotic. 26% were hypogonadal (100% substituted), 16% had central adrenal insufficiency (100% substituted). 14 women were menopaused (74% of women). Thoracic spine was deformed in 31 patients (61%) and lombar spine in 21 patients (43%). Patients with spine deformation were older (P=0.043), with higher BMI (P=0.004) and had a trend to be more hypogonadal (P=0.06). Concerning quality of life, AcroQoL’s average was 70.9% (score 0 to 100, maximal quality of life =100, range 32–98), HAQ’s average was 0.18 (score 0 to 3, maximal quality of life 0, range 0–1.38) and Oswestry’s average was 9.8 (score 0 to 100, maximal quality of life 0, range 0–44).

Conclusions: Acromegaly patients are not at an increased risk of vertebral fractures, but they have vertebral deformations.

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