Relationships between Obesity and Incidence of Fractures in a Middle-Aged Population: A Study from the CARTaGENE Cohort

JBMR Plus. 2023 Mar 3;7(5):e10730. doi: 10.1002/jbm4.10730. eCollection 2023 May.


The association between obesity and fracture risk is complex and may vary by definition of obesity, skeletal site, and sex. We aimed to evaluate the relationships between obesity, defined using body mass index (BMI) or waist circumference (WC), and fracture incidence at any site and by skeletal site (i.e., major osteoporotic fractures [MOFs], distal lower limb fractures [tibia, ankle, feet], and distal upper limb fractures [forearm/elbow, wrist]). The secondary aim was to assess the aforementioned relationships by sex. We used CARTaGENE, a large population-based cohort of individuals aged 40-70 years from Quebec, Canada, who were assessed in 2009-2010. Incident fractures were identified via linkage with healthcare administrative databases over a 7-year period. Cox proportional hazard models adjusted for several potential confounders were used to estimate the relationships, with exposures treated as continuous variables. Results are reported as adjusted hazard ratios (aHRs) and 95% confidence intervals. We identified 19 357 individuals (mean ± standard deviation: age 54 ± 8 years, BMI 27 ± 5 kg/m2, WC 94 ± 14 cm; 51.6% women). During follow-up, 497 women and 323 men sustained a fracture. There was a linear relationship between fracture incidence and WC, while cubic splines best fitted the relationship for BMI. Greater WC was associated with an increased risk of fracture at the distal lower limbs in the whole cohort and in the subgroup of women: aHR for each 10 cm increased in WC of 1.12 (1.03, 1.21) and 1.12 (1.01, 1.24), respectively. In men, WC was not significantly associated with any fracture outcome. Higher BMI was also significantly associated with distal lower limb fracture risk in the whole cohort (p = 0.018). No significant relationships were found between either WC or BMI and the risk of any fracture, MOFs, and distal upper limb fractures. In middle-aged individuals, obesity, and mainly abdominal obesity, was associated with distal lower limb fracture risk. © 2023 The Authors. JBMR Plus published by Wiley Periodicals LLC on behalf of American Society for Bone and Mineral Research.

PMID:37197317 | PMC:PMC10184011 | DOI:10.1002/jbm4.10730


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