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OBJECTIVE: Epidemiological studies have shown an association between increased bone mineral density (BMD) and osteoarthritis (OA), but whether this represents cause or effect remains unclear. In this study, we used a novel approach to investigate this question, determining whether individuals with High Bone Mass (HBM) have a higher prevalence of radiographic hip OA compared with controls. DESIGN: HBM cases came from the UK-based HBM study: HBM was defined by BMD Z-score. Unaffected relatives of index cases were recruited as family controls. Age-stratified random sampling was used to select further population controls from the Chingford and Hertfordshire cohort studies. Pelvic radiographs were pooled and assessed by a single observer blinded to case-control status. Analyses used logistic regression, adjusted for age, gender and body mass index (BMI). RESULTS: 530 HBM hips in 272 cases (mean age 62.9 years, 74% female) and 1702 control hips in 863 controls (mean age 64.8 years, 84% female) were analysed. The prevalence of radiographic OA, defined as Croft score ≥3, was higher in cases compared with controls (20.0% vs 13.6%), with adjusted odds ratio (OR) [95% CI] 1.52 [1.09, 2.11], P = 0.013. Osteophytes (OR 2.12 [1.61, 2.79], P 

Original publication




Journal article


Osteoarthritis cartilage

Publication Date





1120 - 1128


DXA, Epidemiology, Osteoarthritis, Osteoporosis, Radiology, Absorptiometry, Photon, Aged, Bone Density, Bone Diseases, Metabolic, Female, Hip Joint, Humans, Male, Middle Aged, Osteoarthritis, Hip, Osteophyte, Prevalence, United Kingdom