The normal interrelationship of body composition with bone health is less clear in the context of disease. Survivors of acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) exhibit sarcopenic obesity and osteopenia. The impact of body composition on bone health in such survivors was examined.
Subjects and Methods:
Survivors of ALL (N=74), >10 years from diagnosis, underwent dual-energy radiograph absorptiometry and peripheral quantitative computed tomography.
Whole-body bone mineral content (WB BMC) Z scores were greater in males than females, but WB BMC indices (WB BMC/height2) were comparable (0.74±0.125 and 0.72±0.069, respectively). WB BMC index (I) and fat-free mass index correlated significantly with trabecular bone mineral density, only in males. Fat mass index and appendicular lean mass index showed no such correlations. WB BMCI and fat-free mass index also correlated, again predominantly in males, with measures of strength in both trabecular and cortical bone. WB BMCI also correlated strongly with trabecular number, thickness, and hole size, also only in males.
The results point to the need for enhancing muscle mass, measured by appendicular lean mass index, while reducing fat mass and maintaining good bone mineralization in long-term survivors of ALL to ensure the integrity of healthy bones.