The findings showed that levels of anti-Mullerian hormone, a protein hormone produced within the ovary, could strongly predict the rate of bone density loss during the menopause transition.
The test measures the anti-Mullerian hormone in early menopause and can identify women who can be expected to lose bone den sity at a faster than average rate.
"Measuring anti-Mullerian hormone, a marker of ovarian functioning, in the blood in women early in menopause transition can help women and their clinicians predict the rate of future bone loss during the transition and determine the likelihood of faster than average loss," said lead author Arun S. Karlamangla, professor at University of California in Los Angeles, US.
Bone strength in older ages and the ability to avoid devastating hip and spine fractures depend equally on peak bone mass achieved in young adulthood and the amount of bone strength loss during and after the menopause transition, the researchers maintained.
During the menopause transition, bone mass and bone strength decline rapidly, but the rate varies considerably from woman to woman.
The results showed that the median rate of bone density decline was 1.3 percent per year in the spine and 1 percent per year in the neck.
Anti-Mullerian hormone levels ranged from the lower limit of detection (2 picograms per milliliter) to more than 1,000 picograms per millilitre.
Each four-fold decrease in hormone level lead to a 0.15 percent per year faster decline in the bone density in the spine, a 0.13 percent per year faster decline in the neck.
It also depicted an 18 percent and a 17 percent increase in the odds of faster-than-median decline in the spine and neck, respectively.
The researchers analysed data from 474 women aged between 42 and 52 years of age in 1996, were pre- or early peri-menopausal, had an intact uterus with one or two ovaries, and were not taking exogenous sex steroid hormones.
Anti-Mullerian hormone levels in the blood were then measured. The women also had a bone mineral density scan.
The findings were presented at the ongoing ENDO 2016, the annual meeting of the Endocrine Society, in Boston, US.(IANS)