Estrogen deficiency-induced postmenopausal osteoporosis has become a worldwide problem, inducing low bone mass and microarchitectural deterioration of the bone scaffolding in the vertebrae and long bones. With the prevalence of such osteoporosis on the increase, the influence of this estrogen deficiency on the jaw bones has drawn the attention of researchers and clinicians in the field of dentistry. The aim of this article is therefore to review the microstructural changes occurring after ovariectomy in the jaw bones of animal subjects. Induced estrogen deficiency clearly led to structural changes in the jaw bones and alveolar bone of animal subjects (rats and monkeys). Severe bone loss in the rat alveolar bone was principally caused by high bone resorptive activity. This activity accelerated greatly immediately after ovariectomy, and was then followed by more moderate resorptive activity, which continued over an extended period. Additionally, occlusal hypofunction further greatly accelerated the fragility of the alveolar bone structure in ovariectomized rats. Microstructural damage also seen in the alveolar bone of ovariectomized monkeys was found to be directly connected to their systemic osteoporosis. Recent investigations of the relationship in humans between systemic osteoporosis and jaw bone loss have also suggested that a connection may exist between these two. However, more research is required to confirm this connection in humans as well.
- Estrogen deficiency
- Jaw bone
- Rat and monkey alveolar bones
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
- Orthopedics and Sports Medicine