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Title: Bone health and risk of stress fracture in female endurance athletes
Author: Duckham, Rachel
ISNI:       0000 0004 2707 0981
Awarding Body: Loughborough University
Current Institution: Loughborough University
Date of Award: 2011
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Conversely, AA lost femoral neck BMD over the winter and this was not recovered over the summer, although the increase in width of the femoral neck may have partly compensated BMD loss to maintain strength in bending. The final prospective analysis was conducted in a separate sample of female athletes who were diagnosed with a stress fracture injury. The aim of this analysis was to determine the magnitude and time scale of bone loss following a stress fracture injury and subsequent regain following retaining. A group of 4 stress fracture cases and 3 controls were followed for a period of 6-8 months following a stress fracture injury. BMD and BMC (lumbar spine, femoral neck, and trochanter) and estimations of geometric properties CSA, Z and buckling ratio) were assessed using DXA. The mean difference of bone loss and bone regain was determined by BMD, BMC and geometric parameters from baseline to 6-8 weeks and 6-8 weeks to 6-8 months respectively. No significant bone loss was found in either cases or controls from baseline to 6-8 weeks at any of the bone parameters. A significant difference at the femoral neck was found in the injured leg of the stress fracture cases from 6-8weeks to 6-8months (mean (SE) 1.042(0.102) to 1.070(0.102) g/cm2, p=0.004) with no significant change in the contra-lateral case leg 1.036 (0.102) to 1.054(0.109) g/cm2). No significant bone regain was found in the control subjects (health or injured legs ). Thus athletes do not seem to lose significant BMD during the recovery phase of training when partial weight bearing is required. Subsequent bone regain above the initial baseline value does seem to occur in the injured leg within 8 months following the stress fracture once training is resumed. In conclusion the work within this thesis has not only reinforced previous stress fracture findings, showing that a history of stress fracture is increased in athletes with a history of amenorrhoea, but has identified novel results indicating a lower incidence of stress fracture in female endurance athletes than previously reported. Exercise cognitions have been identified as risk factors for stress fracture history independent of menstrual dysfunction. Furthermore and potentially the most novel finding of this research is the importance for the examination of bone geometric properties in amenorrhoeic athletes. Findings suggest that possible structural adaptations counteract the effects of low BMD and annual losses of BMD during seasonal training in amenorrhoeic endurance athletes. In light of these findings this thesis highlights scope for further longitudinal research in the area of structural adaptation to bone in amenorrhoeic athletes. Keywords: Stress fracture, bone mineral density, bone geometry, endurance athletes, menstrual dysfunction, eating and exercise cognitions.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Stress fracture ; Bone mineral density ; Bone geometry ; Endurance athletes ; Menstrual dysfunction ; Eating and exercise cognitions