We propose an experimental technique for the estimation of quality parameters of post-mortem human bone samples with signs of osteoporosis. Since we were interested in characterizing bone microstructure by evaluating porosity, trabecular thickness, and space, we obtained reference values of those parameters for some of our samples through micro-computerized tomography (micro-CT). Nevertheless, as such technology is not widely available, here we used a 2D imaging approximation of those quality parameters. We based our estimation on simple digital microscopy and calibrated to ensure a percentage of similarity higher than 95% in comparison to those values achieved through micro-CT. Additionally, we subjected our samples to mechanical testing to obtain a complete characterization of our samples and to provide a preliminary assessment of the possible relationship between clinical tests of bone mineral density (BMD) and bone quality parameters. Our results show that BMD may have very low specificity in the assessment of the authentic microstructure of bone, then a broader analysis of quality parameters is required to enhance the reliability of future osteoporosis diagnosis technologies.
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