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Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is characterised by synovitis, cartilage destruction in the joints, erosions in the subchondral bone at the joint margins and by periarticular osteopenia1 and also by generalised osteoporosis affecting the axial and appendicular bones.2 Conventional radiographs are the standard method for detection and quantification of joint destruction in RA, but its sensitivity is limited. Bone loss less than around 30% cannot be detected on plain radiographs.3 Radiogrammetry assessing cortical bone width as a measure of bone strength and bone loss was proposed in 1960.4 In RA localised bone involvement in the hands can be measured by digital x-ray radiogrammetry (DXR), which gives an estimate of cortical hand bone mineral density (BMD) in the metacarpal joints two …
Funding This study was supported by grants from the health and medical care executive board of the Västra Götaland, Rune och Ulla Amlövs foundation for Rheumatology Research, Göteborg's Association Against Rheumatism, the Medical Society of Göteborg, the Medical Faculty of Göteborg (LUA), COMBINE and the Margareta Research foundation.
Competing interests None.
Ethics approval This study was conducted with the approval of the regional ethics committee at University of Gothenburg.
Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.
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