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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.