The annual meeting of the Radiological Society of North America was held virtually this year from Nov. 29 to Dec. 5 and attracted participants from around the world, including radiologists, radiation oncologists, physicists in medicine, radiologic technologists, and other health care professionals. The conference featured scientific papers in a number of subspecialties covering the newest trends in radiological research as well as education and informatics exhibits.
In one study, Miriam A. Bredella, M.D., of Harvard Medical School in Boston, and colleagues found that adolescents with severe obesity who undergo weight loss surgery show a reduction in bone mineral density and an increase in marrow adipose tissue in the lumbar spine.
The authors recruited 52 adolescents with severe obesity, including 26 adolescents who were scheduled to undergo weight loss surgery and 26 adolescents who were followed without surgery. The authors performed quantitative computed tomography (CT) to assess volumetric bone mineral density and proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy to measure fat within bones of the lumbar spine at baseline and 12 months. The investigators found that weight loss surgery in adolescents decreased bone strength.
“The key conclusion was that weight loss surgery in adolescents is bad for bones,” Bredella said. “If adolescents are scheduled to undergo weight loss surgery, it is important to pay extra attention to bone health — for example, by a healthy diet with enough calcium and vitamin D and possible supplements and weight bearing exercise.”
In another study, Aaron Afran, a third-year medical school student at the Boston University School of Medicine, and colleagues found that observed relationships between social determinants of health (SDH) such as food and housing insecurity and longer lapses between diagnostic breast imaging/biopsy appointments are supportive of the idea that SDH may influence medical care and ultimately outcomes.
The authors evaluated electronic medical record data, including responses to a novel SDH screening tool called THRIVE in use at the Boston University School of Medicine, as well as clinical data from a breast imaging clinic. A multivariate analysis was conducted to assess the duration of lapse (time between imaging appointments) as it relates to their explanatory SDH variables and controlled for demographic data. The researchers found that food and housing insecurity were both associated with a longer lapse between diagnostic breast imaging and biopsy. Meanwhile, paradoxically, inadequate access to transportation was associated with a shorter lapse between diagnostic breast imaging and biopsy.