Context: More than 200 000 000 people suffer from osteoporosis or osteopenia worldwide. An innocuous and inexpensive treatment would be welcome.
Study design: Serial controlled repeated measure.
Patients: Eighteen serial patients with osteoporosis or osteopenia, average age 68 years.
Methods: Qualifying blood and urine tests and dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry (DEXA) scan preceding 10-minute daily yoga. DEXA scan repeated after 2 years.
Outcome Measurement: Comparison of pre- and postyoga DEXA scans, injuries.
Results: Yoga practitioners gained 0.76 and 0.94 points for spine and hips, respectively, on the T-scale when compared with controls (P = .01). Five patients with osteopenia were reclassified as normal; 2 patients with osteoporosis are now osteopenic. There were no injuries.
Conclusion: Yoga appears to be an effective way to build bone mineral density after menopause.
Columbia College of Physicians and Surgeons, New York.
Corresponding Author: Loren M. Fishman, MD, BPhil(Oxon), Columbia College of Physicians and Surgeons, 1009 Park Avenue, New York, NY 10028. (Loren@sciatica.org).