Pemphigus and osteoporosis: A case-control study

Yonit Wohl, Jacob Dreiher, Arnon D. Cohen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations


Objective: To investigate the association between pemphigus and osteoporosis. Design: Case-control study. Setting: A large health care provider organization in Israel. Participants: Patients with pemphigus older than 20 years (hereinafter, pemphigus patients) were compared with a sample of age- and sex-matched controls. Interventions: Data retrieval from a large community-based medical database regarding health-related lifestyles, comorbidities, use of medications, bone mineral density scans, and drugs for osteoporosis. Main Outcome Measures: The prevalence of osteoporosis in patients and controls, use of bone mineral density scans, and drugs for osteoporosis. Results: The study included 255 pemphigus patients and 509 controls older than 20 years. Osteoporosis was diagnosed among 40.4% of pemphigus patients compared with 6.5% of controls (P<.001; odds ratio [OR], 9.77; 95% confidence interval [CI], 6.34-15.10). After controlling for confounders, including age, sex, and duration of glucocorticosteroid therapy and proton pump inhibitor therapy, the associations with osteoporosis persisted (OR, 4.27; 95% CI, 2.44-7.47; P<.001). Similar results were obtained when using cumulative glucocorticosteroid dose. Only 73 pemphigus patients with osteoporosis (70.9%) had undergone a bone mineral density test within the past 10 years. While most pemphigus patients with osteoporosis purchased medications for osteoporosis, including calcium (95.1% of patients), cholecalciferol (89.3%), bisphosphonates (90.3%), or raloxiphene (8.8%), the duration of therapy was short. Conclusions: We found an association between pemphigus and osteoporosis, which persisted after controlling for glucocorticosteroid use. Monitoring and treatment of osteoporosis in pemphigus patients was suboptimal in this study.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1126-1131
Number of pages6
JournalArchives of Dermatology
Issue number10
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2010

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Dermatology


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