COVID-19 illness and treatment decrease bone mineral density of surviving hospitalized patients

Berktaş B. M., Gökçek A., Hoca N. T., Koyuncu A.

European Review for Medical and Pharmacological Sciences, vol.26, no.8, pp.3046-3056, 2022 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 26 Issue: 8
  • Publication Date: 2022
  • Doi Number: 10.26355/eurrev_202204_28636
  • Journal Name: European Review for Medical and Pharmacological Sciences
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, EMBASE, MEDLINE, Directory of Open Access Journals
  • Page Numbers: pp.3046-3056
  • Keywords: COVID-19, SARS-CoV-2, Osteoporosis, Bone mineral density, Hypocalcemia, MANAGEMENT, RISK, SARS, HIP
  • Ataturk University Affiliated: No


© 2022 Verduci Editore s.r.l. All rights reserved.OBJECTIVE: The number patients surviving COVID-19 hospitalization is steadily increasing. Follow-up management for these patients relies on an understanding of the long-term effects of COVID-19. Specifically, there are insufficient data about the lasting effects of COVID-19 on bone health. We aim in this study to evaluate whether COVID-19 illness and treatment adversely affect the bone health of surviving patients. PATIENTS AND METHODS: We assessed the bone mineral density (BMD) of hospitalized COVID-19 patients at diagnosis and at follow-up visits. Using the chest computed tomography (CT) scans of patients that were obtained for clinical management at diagnosis and follow-up visits, BMD was retrospectively measured by quantitative CT. The effect of COVID-19 severity markers and treatment-related factors on BMD were also assessed. RESULTS: BMD decreased by a mean of 8.6% (± 10.5%) from diagnosis to follow-up. The follow-up visits occurred at a mean of 81 (± 48) days after hospital discharge. The BMD decrease was significantly greater than expected for age-related annual BMD loss. The osteoporosis ratio increased two-fold after hospitalization for COVID-19 because of this substantial bone loss. On multivariable linear regression, only severity of COVID-19 pneumonia on initial chest CT and total steroid dose were predictive of change in BMD after COVID-19 hospitalization. CONCLUSIONS: Secondary osteoporosis may occur as a post-acute sequela of COVID-19. Therefore, the bone health status of patients surviving COVID-19 hospitalization should be monitored closely at follow-up visits, to facilitate the prevention and early treatment of osteoporosis complications.