AbstractIntroductionLow bone mineral density is a significant problem in children with Thalassemia which may lead to increased risk for fragility fractures and suboptimal peak bone mass. This cross-sectional study was conducted to determine the bone health status of Thalassemia children Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia Medical Centre and Paediatrics Insititute Kuala Lumpur Hospital.MethodsA total of 81 respondents diagnosed with transfusion dependant beta Thalassemia (41 boys and 40 girls) aged between 7 to 19 years old completed the study. The data collected were demographic information, anthropometric measurements, dairy frequency questionnaires, dietary habits of the respondents and their parents, dietary intakes and bone densitometry using Ultrasound Bone Densitometer.ResultsFor Quantitative Ultrasound (QUS) parameters, T-score of 9.8% participants were lower than -1.0 and 30.9% of the participants had lower Speed of Sound (SOS) than healthy SOS. This study showed there was no difference in bone density by sex (p>0.05). The median bone density of boys was 1616.00 m/ sec (IQR= 39.00) and girls’ was 1579.00 m/ sec (IQR= 116.00). SOS was not increased with age, height and weight; but girls’ Body Mass Index (BMI). Malay children had significantly higher SOS than non-Malay children.ConclusionsThis study highlights a need of proper intervention for the high risk group to achieve optimal bone health.
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