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Low bone mineral density (BMD) in HIV-infected individuals has been documented in an increasing number of studies. However, it is not clear whether it is the infection itself or the treatment that causes bone impairment. Microindentation measures bone material strength (Bone Material Strength index) directly. We recruited 85 patients, 50 infected with HIV and 35 controls. Median Bone Material Strength index was 84.5 (interquartile range 83-87) in HIV-infected patients and 90 (88.5-93) in controls (P < 0.001). No significant differences in BMD between cases and controls at any of the sites examined (total hip, femoral neck, and lumbar spine). HIV infection is associated with bone damage, independently of BMD.

Original publication




Journal article


Journal of acquired immune deficiency syndromes (1999)

Publication Date





314 - 318


*Infectious Diseases Department, Hospital del Mar, Hospital del Mar Research Institute (IMIM), Barcelona, Spain; †Department of Medicine, Autonomous University of Barcelona, Barcelona, Spain; ‡Internal Medicine Department, Hospital del Mar, Hospital del Mar Research Institute, Barcelona, Spain; §Oxford NIHR Musculoskeletal Biomedical Research Unit, Nuffield Department of Orthopaedics, Rheumatology and Musculoskeletal Sciences, University of Oxford, Oxford, United Kingdom; and ‖Primary Care, ABS Passeig de Sant Joan, Barcelona, Catalan Institute of Health (ICS), Spain.


Femur Neck, Lumbar Vertebrae, Humans, HIV Infections, Osteoporosis, Anti-HIV Agents, Absorptiometry, Photon, Risk Assessment, Cross-Sectional Studies, Bone Density, Adult, Middle Aged, Spain, Female, Male