Skeletal Health Prognostications
AbstractThe National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) is an ongoing cross-sectional population survey conducted by the National Center for Health Statistics, which is part of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The objective of NHANES is to assess the health and nutrition of adults and children throughout the USA by doing in-home interviews and health examinations. The examinations are performed in a mobile examination center made of four linked trailers containing high-tech medical equipment. One of the many measurements taken is bone mineral density (BMD) testing of the proximal femur by dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry (DXA). NHANES data provide a benchmark for public health policymakers and epidemiologists to evaluate the health status of Americans. These data have been used to formulate healthcare policy, evaluate health trends, and perform extensive epidemiologic research. NHANES III (1988–1994) values have become the reference standard for calculating T-scores at the hip in the USA, and may soon be officially recognized as the international reference standard. In addition, NHANES provides an abundance of information about the association, or lack of association, of many variables with BMD.
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