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Yoga for Osteoporosis: A Pilot Study

Fishman, Loren M. MD, BPhil(Oxon)

doi: 10.1097/TGR.0b013e3181b02dd6

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. (

© 2009 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.