By Dr. Brian McDonough

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – It is a somewhat bizarre technique called whole-body vibration (WBV), which involves standing on an oscillating, rapid moving platform. It has been thought of as a potential therapy for osteoporosis.

The idea is that movement would help people at risk for osteoporosis because of illness or disability. There was a reason for this: in animal studies, WBV showed significant improvements in bone formation rate, bone mineral density (bmd), trabecular structure, and cortical thickness. But it has not been tested in people.

According to a report in the Annals of Internal Medicine, the researchers concluded that WBV had no affect on bmd or bone structure. Therefore, WBV does not seem beneficial for preventing bone loss in postmenopausal women.

The concept of exercise helping to prevent or reduce the development of osteoporosis still holds true. This is why it is extremely important to encourage exercise in women.

Reported By Dr. Brian McDonough, KYW Newsradio Medical Editor

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