Decreased bone mineral density in adult patients with Hemophilia: Clinical significance, prevalence and risk factors

Ursa Broum-Glaberman, Michelle Cordoba Kissee, Mary Lou Damiano, Denise J. Roe, Alison T. Stopeck

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Osteoporosis is widely recognized as a major health problem, and considerable resources are spent screening, diagnosing, and treating this disease in postmenopausal women. Adults with hemophilia have unique factors that place them at an increased risk for developing osteoporosis including periods of immobilization after bleeds, impaired joint mobility that may limit weight bearing physical activity, and infection with Hepatitis C virus (HCV) and/orhuman immunodeficiency virus (HIV). Several publications report the prevalence of osteoporosis in adults with hemophilia to be in the range of 25% and 50%. The severity of hem ophilic joint arthropathy appears to be the strongest predictor of significant bone loss in patients with hemophilia. The relative contribution of other risk factors, including HIV and HCV, is less well defined. The clinical significance of decreased bone mineral density as measured by dual energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA) to fracture risk in men, and in particularyounger men, is also unclear. We recommend screening adult patients with hemophilia with documented fragility fractures, in those with severe joint arthropathy, and in those patients > 50 years of age with additional risk factors such as HIV/HCV infection or low BMI. Adequate vitamin D and calcium intake, weight bearing physical activity, and interventions to maintain joint mobility are recommended for all hemophilia patients. The role of pharmacologic agents, including bisphosphonates, is untested, and they should be reserved for those with documented osteoporosis and fragility fractures or additional risk factors that place them at high risk for developing fragility fractures.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)27-33
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Coagulation Disorders
Issue number1
StatePublished - Oct 2011


  • Bone mineral density
  • Fragility fracture
  • Hemophilia
  • Joint arthropathy
  • Osteopenia
  • Osteoporosis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology


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