1. Mean linear attenuation coefficients for trabecular bone (T) in the distal radius and total absorption coefficients (TA) in the radial mid-shafts of 22 patients with crush fracture osteoporosis were measured serially for a year by using computed tomography. After approximately 6 months, each patient was admitted to a metabolic ward for an 18-day calcium balance study.
2. The rate of change (trend) in trabecular bone (T) in the distal radius was a better predictor of calcium balance than the trend in mid-shaft cortical bone (TA).
3. The scatter in the regressions of the trends of T and TA on calcium balance could be accounted for by known methodological uncertainties.