Objectives The aim of this study was to determine value range of the parameters SOS, BUA and stiffness for Portuguese children and adolescents in age, sex and race groups.
Methods The study included 473 healthy children coming from two Lisbon schools. The population was 92,2% caucasian. There were 261 (55,2%) girls and 212 (44,8%) boys. Mean age was 10,7+2,4 year, range 6–17 yr. The Sahara Clinical Sonometer of Hologic was used to performed a quantitative ultrasound (QUS) measurement of the non-dominant calcaneus. Patient examination was performed by two rheumatologists.
Results The mean of BUA, SOS and stiffness were: 70.07+19.82 db/MHz, 1563.64+26.65 m/s and 98.96+17.7.
There were no statistical differences between sex or race in each groups.
We observed an increased BUA, SOS and stiffness from 6 to 9 yr in caucasian boys and then stabilised. At this time the means were respectively 81.06 db/MHz, 1582 m/s and 110.86. In caucasian girls the increase of values occurred two years later and until 14 yr. The Spearman’s rho correlation coefficient shown, in caucasian girls, a influence of age, height and weight on QUS parameters. In boys, this factors affect only SOS and stiffness. There were no correlation with this factors in black.
Conclusion Measuring bone mass of children by QUS is good technique. However reference data ranges must be developed for each population.
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