Publications by authors named "Uli Wehr"

2 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Effects of calcium supplementation on bone loss and fractures in congestive heart failure.

Eur J Endocrinol 2007 Mar;156(3):309-14

Medizinische Poliklinik, Klinikum Innenstadt, Department of Cardiology, Ludwig-Maximilians University, Munich, Germany.

Background: Cross-sectional studies have shown that more than 50% of patients with congestive heart failure (CHF) have decreased bone mineral density (BMD). There is limited knowledge about the longitudinal changes of BMD and how to treat bone loss in patients with CHF.

Methods: The present study was a prospective, longitudinal trial in which 33 male patients with CHF (ejection fraction (EF): 30+/-11%) were assigned to 1000 mg calcium supplementation or no supplementation. BMD was measured at the lumbar spine (LS) and the femoral neck (FN) by dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry at baseline and after 12 months.

Results: Osteopenia (LS 33% and FN 36%) and osteoporosis (LS 15% and FN 6%) were frequently seen in these patients; 70% showed impaired renal function, 42% secondary hyperparathyroidism, and 33% hypogonadism. Bone resorption markers were strongly elevated and correlated negatively with the EF. Patients without calcium supplementation revealed a reduction of BMD (LS 1.7% and FN 1.9%) within 12 months. The fracture incidence was 6%. Patients with calcium supplementation also demonstrated a 6% fracture incidence and a decrease in BMD (LS 1.2% and FN 1.6%), which was not significantly different from the untreated group. Loss of BMD at FN was only seen in patients with impaired renal function.

Conclusions: Patients with CHF demonstrate a progressive decrease in BMD when compared with age-matched healthy individuals. Increased bone resorption due to renal insufficiency with consecutive secondary hyperparathyroidism is a main reason for BMD loss in CHF. Calcium supplementation alone cannot sufficiently prevent the decrease in BMD.
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March 2007

The role of tacrolimus (FK506)-based immunosuppression on bone mineral density and bone turnover after cardiac transplantation: a prospective, longitudinal, randomized, double-blind trial with calcitriol.

Transplantation 2002 Feb;73(4):547-52

Medizinische Klinik, Klinikum Innenstadt, Department of Cardiology, Ludwig-Maximilians University, 80336 Munich, Germany.

Background: Tacrolimus (FK506) is a new immunosuppressive drug in organ transplantation that has demonstrated experimentally to be more deleterious on bone mineral metabolism than cyclosporine. The purpose of this clinical study was to evaluate the effects of a tacrolimus-based immunosuppression on the skeleton and to investigate in a prospective, longitudinal, randomized, double-blind, study the effect of 0.25 microg calcitriol (1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D3) versus placebo in the prevention of bone loss and fracture rate after heart transplantion (HTx).

Methods: A total of 53 patients (5 female, 48 male, mean age: 53+/-11 years) were randomized to the study medication. Basic therapy included calcium and sex hormone replacement in hypogonadism. Bone mineral density of the lumbar spine (LS) and femoral neck (FN) were performed at baseline, after 12 and 24 months. Biochemical indexes of mineral metabolism were measured every 3 months.

Results: Overall bone mineral density (BMD) was significantly decreased after HTx (T-score-LS: 89+/-13%; FN: 88+/-14%). LS-BMD (% change in g/cm2) increased significantly within the study period in the calcitriol group (12 months: 7.1+/-8.1%, P<0.01; 24 months: 14.0+/-10.1%, P<0.01) and showed a positive trend in the placebo group (12 months: 4.5+/-9.3%, NS; 24 months: 6.2+/-8.0%, NS). FN-BMD in the calcitriol group was stable (12 months: -2.1+/-4.2%; NS; 24 months: -0.9+/-3.2%, NS). FN-BMD in the placebo group decreased significantly within the first 12 month follow-up period (-7.3+/-5.4; P<0.05) and stabilized within 2 years (-8.0+/-4.1%; P < 0.05). Fracture incidence was low during the study interval (first year: 5.0%, second year: 0%). Bone resorption markers decreased significantly during calcitriol therapy.

Conclusions: High dose tacrolimus-based immunosuppressive regimen is associated with a rapid bone loss early after cardiac transplantation. Beyond the first 6 months after HTx, calcium, vitamin D, and hormone supplementation in hypogonadism lead sufficiently to bone mineral recovery. Besides immunosuppression, both concomitant hypogonadism and secondary hyperparathyroidism play a major role for the bone loss and should be therefore monitored and treated adequately. Low dose calcitriol should be substituted for at least 2 years as additional antiresorptive therapy.
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February 2002