Determining osteoporosis risk in older Colono adults from rural Amazonian Ecuador using calcaneal ultrasonometry

Felicia C. Madimenos, Melissa A. Liebert, Tara J. Cepon-Robins, J. Josh Snodgrass, Lawrence S. Sugiyama

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


Objective: Low bone density and osteoporosis prevalence, while well-documented in wealthy nations, are poorly studied in rural, non-clinical contexts in economically developing regions such as Latin America. This study contributes preliminary osteoporosis risk data for a rural Colono (mestizo) population from Amazonian Ecuador. Methods: Anthropometrics were collected for 119 adult participants (74 females, 45 males [50-90 years old]). Heel bone density and T-scores were recorded using calcaneal ultrasonometry Results: Approximately, 33.6% of the participants had low bone density and were at high-risk for osteoporosis. Four times as many females as males were considered high-risk. Consistent with epidemiological literature, advancing age was significantly associated with lower bone density values (P = 0.001). Conclusions: Low bone density and osteoporosis prevalence are expected to increase in this and other economically transitioning populations, yet infrastructure to monitor this changing epidemiological landscape is almost non-existent. Human biologists are uniquely positioned to contribute data from remote populations, a critical step toward initiating increased resource allocation for diagnosis and prevention. Am. J. Hum. Biol. 27:139-142, 2015.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)139-142
Number of pages4
JournalAmerican Journal of Human Biology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2015
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anatomy
  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Anthropology
  • Genetics


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