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  3. Bone Health
Medical and paramedical


Bone Health

Bone health in patients with trisomy 21 was ignored for many years. It has become a topical issue due to the spectacular rise in their life expectancy. Much recent research is helping understand why patients with trisomy 21, especially men, have lower bone mass and more frequent and earlier osteoporosis than the neurotypical population.


In this video and accompanying technical sheet, Dr. Hervé Walti, a pediatrician at the Jérôme Lejeune Institute, tells you more about the mechanisms, risk factors and options for monitoring, preventing, and potentially treating osteoporosis, thereby improving the quality of life for patients with trisomy 21.

See below for the presentation accompanying this video on “bone health”

  • Dreyfus D, Lauer E, Wilkinson J. Characteristics associated with bone mineral density screening in adults with intellectual disabilities. J Am Board Fam Med. 2014 Jan-Feb;27(1):104-14. doi: 10.3122/jabfm.2014.01.130114. PMID: 24390892.
  • Hernandez CJ, Beaupré GS, Carter DR. A theoretical analysis of the relative influences of peak BMD, age-related bone loss and menopause on the development of osteoporosis. Osteoporos Int. 2003 Oct;14(10):843-7. doi: 10.1007/s00198-003-1454-8. Epub 2003 Aug 7. PMID: 12904837.
  • Hernlund E, Svedbom A, Ivergård M, Compston J, Cooper C, Stenmark J, McCloskey EV, Jönsson B, Kanis JA. Osteoporosis in the European Union: medical management, epidemiology and economic burden. A report prepared in collaboration with the International Osteoporosis Foundation (IOF) and the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industry Associations (EFPIA). Arch Osteoporos. 2013;8(1-2):136. doi: 10.1007/s11657-013-0136-1. Epub 2013 Oct 11. PMID: 24113837; PMCID: PMC3880487.
  • Kerins G, Petrovic K, Bruder MB, Gruman C. Medical conditions and medication use in adults with Down syndrome: a descriptive analysis. Downs Syndr Res Pract. 2008 Oct;12(2):141-7. doi: 10.3104/reports.2009. PMID: 19026287.
  • Kralick AE, Zemel BS. Evolutionary Perspectives on the Developing Skeleton and Implications for Lifelong Health. Front Endocrinol (Lausanne). 2020 Mar 4;11:99. doi: 10.3389/fendo.2020.00099. PMID: 32194504; PMCID: PMC7064470.
  • LaCombe JM, Roper RJ. Skeletal dynamics of Down syndrome: A developing perspective. Bone. 2020 Apr;133:115215. doi: 10.1016/j.bone.2019.115215. Epub 2019 Dec 27. PMID: 31887437; PMCID: PMC7044033.
  • Maggioli C, Stagi S. Bone modeling, remodeling, and skeletal health in children and adolescents: mineral accrual, assessment and treatment. Ann Pediatr Endocrinol Metab. 2017 Mar;22(1):1-5. doi: 10.6065/apem.2017.22.1.1. Epub 2017 Mar 31. PMID: 28443253; PMCID: PMC5401817.
  • Massachusetts DDS Health Screening Recommendations Updated April 2019
  • McKelvey KD, Fowler TW, Akel NS, Kelsay JA, Gaddy D, Wenger GR, Suva LJ. Low bone turnover and low bone density in a cohort of adults with Down syndrome. Osteoporos Int. 2013 Apr;24(4):1333-8. doi: 10.1007/s00198-012-2109-4. Epub 2012 Aug 18. PMID: 22903293; PMCID: PMC3606288.
  • Schrager S. Epidemiology of osteoporosis in women with cognitive impairment. Ment Retard. 2006 Jun;44(3):203-11. doi: 10.1352/0047-6765(2006)44[203:EOOIWW]2.0.CO;2. PMID: 16677065.
  • Tang JYM, Luo H, Wong GHY, Lau MMY, Joe GM, Tse MA, Ip P, Wong ICK, Lum TYS. Bone mineral density from early to middle adulthood in persons with Down syndrome. J Intellect Disabil Res. 2019 Aug;63(8):936-946. doi: 10.1111/jir.12608. Epub 2019 Feb 18. PMID: 30775821.
  • Wilkinson JE, Culpepper L, Cerreto M. Screening tests for adults with intellectual disabilities. J Am Board Fam Med. 2007 Jul-Aug;20(4):399-407. doi: 10.3122/jabfm.2007.04.060210. PMID: 17615421; PMCID: PMC3708482.

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