Review: exercise reduces bone loss from the spine in postmenopausal women
QUESTION: In postmenopausal women, does exercise slow bone loss or have an effect on axial and appendicular bone density?
Studies were identified by searching Medline, EMBASE/Excerpta Medica, CINAHL, HealthSTAR, Sports Discus, the Cochrane Controlled Trials Register, PEDro, and the specialised registry of the Cochrane Musculoskeletal Group (all from 1966 to January 2000). Bibliographies of relevant articles were reviewed, and experts in the field were contacted for additional studies and data.
Studies published in any language were selected if they were randomised controlled trials (RCTs) comparing an exercise programme (eg, walking, callisthenics, resisted strengthening) assumed to be adequate to improve aerobic capacity or adequate to improve both aerobic capacity and muscle strength with standard treatment (eg, usual activity or placebo with or without drug consumption), and participants were healthy postmenopausal women 45–70 years of age.
Data were extracted on sample size, details of the intervention, study quality, and outcomes. Main outcomes included percent change (loss) from baseline of bone mineral density (BMD) per year and number of fractures of the hip, vertebrae, and wrist at 1 and 2 years of follow up.
18 RCTs (n=1423) met the selection criteria. Meta-analyses were done using a fixed effects model for homogeneous outcomes and a …