Risk Factors for Fractures and Avascular Osteonecrosis in Type 1 Gaucher Disease: A Study from the International Collaborative Gaucher Group (ICGG) Gaucher Registry

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We hypothesized that overall disease activity or the severity of involvement of individual disease compartments, as measured by clinical and surrogate markers, predict the risk of avascular osteonecrosis (AVN) or fractures in type 1 Gaucher disease (GD1). We applied our risk-set matched case-control method to identify four patient groups within the International Collaborative Gaucher Group (ICGG) Gaucher Registry based on the presence and absence of AVN and fractures. Characteristics of GD1 were examined by comparing the distributions of each risk factor in cases versus matched controls using conditional logistic regression to calculate adjusted odds ratios (OR). Potential risk factors included hematological and visceral parameters, GD1 biomarkers, white blood cells, GBA1 genotype, and spine and femur dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA) Z-scores. In the total population of 5894 ICGG Gaucher Registry patients, 544 experienced at least one episode of AVN; 2008 reported no history of AVN. Clinical and surrogate markers of disease activity were similar in patients with and without AVN; patients with AVN were 1.6 times more likely to be anemic compared to matched controls (OR = 1.59; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.06–2.38, p < 0.05). For fractures, 319 patients suffered fractures and 1233 had no prior history of fractures. Clinical and surrogate markers of disease in patients with and without fractures were similar, except for mean lumbar spine DXA Z-scores. Among patients with fractures, 49.3% had DXA Z-scores ≤ −1 compared to 31.0% in the control group. Compared to controls with Z-scores > −1.0, GD1 patients exhibiting Z-scores ≤ −1 had an OR of 5.55 (95% CI, 1.81–17.02, p < 0.01) for fracture. In GD1, after controlling for gender, year of birth, treatment status, and splenectomy status, we identified new risk factors for AVN and fractures. Concurrent anemia was associated with an increased risk for AVN. Low bone mineral density of the lumbar spine was a strong risk factor for fractures of the spine and femur in GD1.