Last edited 11/2020 and last reviewed 11/2020
Osteopenia is defined as a reduction in bone density.
The term is often used radiologically when it describes a qualitative appearance of bone on a radiograph.
Increasingly however the term refers to a quantitative loss of bone mineral density usually measured either at the hip or spine with dual energy X ray aborptiometry.
Osteopaenia is defined when bone density at the spine or hip between 1.0 and 2.5 standard deviations below the average for healthy young adults (T-score between -1 and -2.5).
Osteoporosis is defined if the T-score is more than 2.5 standard deviations below the average.
Normal bone mineral density is : T-score of -1 standard deviations or above
- lifestyle advice
- balanced diet including adequate calcium and vitamin D
- regular weight-bearing exercise eg. walking, dancing, skipping, gym
- stop smoking
- reduce alcohol intake
- zoledronic acid may be considered to reduce risk of clinical fractures in women over 65
years of age who have osteopenia at hip or femoral neck on DXA (2)
- patients with osteopenia (t score -1 to -2.5) should be re- scanned in 3 years
- Wirral University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust. Wirral guidelines for the management of osteoporosis.
- SIGN (June 2020). Management of osteoporosis and the prevention of fragility fractures