Patients with poorly controlled Diabetes and high blood sugar levels often have bone with above average Bone Mineral Density (BMD). This is good? WRONG !!
High blood sugars lead to glycolization of the Bone Matrix, which is the protein part of the bone – collagen. This means that glucose (sugar) molecules are incorporated into the collagen protein chains. This distorts and stiffens the Bone Matrix.
Normally, stiffer is better, Calcium stiffens the bone matrix, which strengthens the bone. But too much of a good thing is bad. Too stiff becomes brittle. Brittle bones break more easily than “stiff enough” bones.
Persons with diabetes who routinely run high blood sugars fracture more easily than non-diabetics. Therefore, at the same BMD and T-score, diabetics have a higher Fracture Risk.
We knew that high blood sugars in diabetics are bad for kidneys, eyes and nerves. Now we know that high blood sugars in diabetics are bad for bones too.
Take Control of Your Future. If you have diabetes, work with your primary doc to get your blood sugars under control.
Jay Ginther, MD