Fluoride Action Network


Endemic water borne fluorosis is a public health problem in Isparta, a city located in southern Turkey. In order to investigate the association between osteosclerosis and fluorosis, we retrospectively screened the results of lumbar spine and femur neck bone mineral density (BMD) of 1500 patients who were examined before, for any reason in between 2001-2003. Sixty nine patients (67 females and 2 males, mean age 52.6+/-10.2) with vertebra T-scores>or=+2 were found only except a patient with osteoid osteoma in the femur neck (femur T-score+6.64). Thirty-four of the patients could be reexamined with lateral vertebra BMD and investigated for fluorosis and the other etiologic causes of osteosclerosis. Of 34 patients, 14 had either mottled tooth enamel or urine fluoride level greater than 1.5 mg/l. Other etiologic causes were hypothyroidism (2), hypoparathyroidism (1), history of lumbar fracture (1), use of retinoids (1), vitamin D (7), oral calcium preparations (9), and bisphosphanates (3). Lateral lumbar vertebral T-score was greater than+2 in 12 patients (35.3%). Femur T-score was greater than+2 in 7 patients (20.6%). Fourteen patients (41.2%) had lateral vertebral or femur T-score>or=+2. Five (35.7%) of these patients had signs of fluorosis, as discussed before. Mean body mass index of individuals with fluorosis was 36.4+/-7.9 and this result was significantly higher than other osteosclerotic subjects (31.6+/-4.4). In conclusion we believe that approximately one third of the osteosclerosis in our region was due to endemic skeletal fluorosis and obesity may enhance this osteosclerotic type bone changes in endemic fluorosis.