Obesity and osteoporosis

  • Konstantinos Gkastaris
  • Athanasios D. Anastasilakis
Keywords: Adipose Tissue, Bone Mineral Density, Obesity, Overweight, Skeletal Microarchitecture


Osteoporosis is the most common skeletal disease and a major public health problem. It affects around 1/3 of postmenopausal women, an incidence that is expected to double in the next thirty years due to the increase in life expectancy. Besides a significant increase in morbidity and mortality, osteoporosis and its complication i.e. the low energy fracture, also result in a considerable and continuously growing economic burden for healthcare systems. Understanding the factors involved in the manifestation of the disease and its complications is crucial for the development of disease prevention and treatment programs. On the other hand, obesity has become a global epidemic and obesity related medical conditions also infer a tremendous economic cost. The relationship between obesity and bone metabolism is complex and not fully understood. Several mechanical, biochemical and hormonal mechanisms have been suggested to explain the association between the adipose tissue and bone diseases. Most studies indicate a positive correlation between Body Mass Index (BMI) and bone density. However, the effect of obesity on the bone is probably not favourable in terms of skeletal micro-architecture, whereas low-grade systemic inflammation and specific peptides and adipokines seem to play a crucial role. The study of these factors and the interpretation of the events arising from the interaction between adipose tissue and bone metabolism seem to constitute an emerging field of research in the area of ​​bone metabolism.


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Author Biographies

Konstantinos Gkastaris

Department of Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism, St Luke’s Hospital, Thessaloniki, Greece

Athanasios D. Anastasilakis

Department of Endocrinology, 424 Military General Hospital, Thessaloniki, Greece


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