Is snoring a risk factor for fragility fracture?

Recently, there have been a number of studies that have associated obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), a byproduct of snoring, with significantly lower bone mineral density in patients with OSA than in controls. 

Bartold Biomechanics is all about keeping you informed about what risk factors may be out there for conditions you see commonly, especially those that appear out of left field.

A brand new study takes the association of snoring, attendant OSA and bone health one step further by identifying that snoring puts the patient at risk of fracture, but ONLY in women.

Well, that is a relief!

But seriously, this may be a question you would like to implement into your history taking, because sorting out the snoring may be a really important part of the treatment.

Increased fragility fracture risk in Korean women who snore: a 10-year population-based prospective cohort study, 
Choi et al,
BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders 2017, 18:236

The conclusion of the study is as follows

This study showed that snoring is significantly associated with fragility fracture risk in women aged 40 years and older. Snoring may be associated with a decrease in BMD and a decrease in the alertness level during the daytime. These 2 health problems are in turn probably associated with an increase in the fracture risk.

Information about snoring can easily be obtained with history taking, and treatment options for snoring are available. Thus, information on the frequency of snoring in women may improve the accuracy of fragility fracture risk prediction, which can help in deciding whether intervention or treatment is necessary.

The paper may be read in its entirety here.

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Simon Bartold
Director of Bartold Clinical