A retrospective study was performed including all children with IF between 2000 and 2015 who underwent a DXA measurement and/or a hand radiograph. Z-scores of BMD total body (BMD TB) and lumbar spine (BMD LS), bone mineral apparent density (BMAD) and bone health index (BHI) were collected. A low BMD and low BHI were defined as a Z-score ≤ -2. DXA and DXR results were compared for cases in which a DXA and hand radiograph were performed within a 6 months’ interval.
Forty-six children were included. Overall, 24.3% of the children had a low BMD at the first DXA at a median age of 6 years; correction for growth failure (n=6)) reduced this to 16.2%. Fifty percent had a low BHI at the first hand radiograph. Median DXA and BHI Z-scores were significantly lower than reference scores. Age, duration of PN and surgical IF were related to lower Z-scores at the first DXA. Paired DXA and DXR results (n=18) were compared, resulting in a Cohen’s kappa of 0.746 (‘substantial’) for BMD TB. Spearman’s correlation coefficient for BHI and BMD TB Z-scores was 0.856 (p<0.001). Hand radiography had a sensitivity of 90% and specificity of 86% (BMD TB).
Up to 50% of the children had a low BMD. Children with IF have a significantly poorer bone health than the reference population, also after weaning off PN. Bone health assessment by DXA and DXR showed good agreement, especially for Z-scores ≤ -2. DXR assessment using BoneXpert software seems to be feasible for monitoring of bone health in children with IF.