Bone mineral density and bone turnover markers of patients with Behçet's disease


*Corresponding author, Zonguldak Karaelmas Universitesi, Uygulama ve Arastirma Hastanesi, Dermatoloji Anabilim Dali, Kozlu 67600, Zonguldak, Turkey, tel. +90 372 2664433; fax +90 372 2610155; E-mail:


Background  Behçet's disease (BD) is a systemic inflammatory disease of unknown aetiology. The pathogenesis of rheumatological findings and the status of bone metabolism in this disease are unknown. Inflammatory diseases may predispose to a decrease in bone mineral density (BMD) and there are many studies concerning osteoporosis in chronic inflammatory diseases.

Objective  The aim of this study was to investigate BMD and bone turnover markers in patients with BD.

Methods  Thirty BD patients (17 male and 13 female patients, mean age 36.9 ± 12.6 years) and a total of 30 age- and sex-matched healthy controls (17 male and 13 female controls, mean age 34.9 ± 8.95 years) recruited from the general population were enrolled in the study. Bone mineral density was measured at the lumbar spine (L1-4) and the left hip (total hip) using dual energy X-ray absorptiometry. Serum samples were collected between 8 and 10 am after overnight fasting. Serum calcium (Ca), phosphate (P), parathormone (PTH), total alkaline phosphatase (ALP), osteocalcin (OC), erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR), and C-reactive protein (CRP) were measured. Free deoxypyridinoline cross-links (DPD) in second-void urine and total daily urinary calcium excretion were analysed.

Results  No statistically significant difference in lumbar spine or femoral BMD and bone turnover markers were found between BD patients and control groups (P > 0.05).

Conclusion  Although it is difficult to draw definite conclusions because of the limited number of patients involved, our study indicates that bone mineral density and bone turnover markers in Behçet's disease were no different than in healthy subjects.