Services : Bone Density
Bone density scanning, also called Dual-energy X-ray Absorptiometry (DXA) or
Bone Densitometry, is used to measure bone loss.
A DXA exam is most often performed on the lower spine and hips. In children and
in some adults, the whole body may be scanned.
What are common uses for Bone Density (DXA)?
DXA is commonly used to diagnose osteoporosis, a condition that often affects women
after menopause but may also be found in men. Osteoporosis involves a gradual loss of
calcium and structural changes that cause the bones to become thinner, fragile and
more likely to break.
DXA is effective in monitoring the treatment for osteoporosis and other conditions
that can cause bone loss.
Are there any risks?
Radiation in DXA exams is minimal due to modern technology and the brief duration of
the exam. However, X-rays can harm a developing fetus. Please be sure to inform your
physician or the technologist if you are pregnant or think you may be pregnant before
having a DXA exam.
How should I prepare for the exam?
You should not take calcium supplements for at least 24 hours before your exam.
You should wear comfortable, loose-fitting clothing for your ultrasound exam.
If you recently had a barium examination or have been injected with a contrast material
for a computed tomography (CT) scan or radioisotope scan. You may have to wait 10 to 14
days before undergoing a DXA test.
Please be sure to inform your physician or the technologist if you are pregnant or think
you may be pregnant before having a DXA exam.
How long will the exam take?
Most DXA exams are completed in approximately 20-30 minutes.
How do I get my exam results?
After your exam, the radiologist will review your images and a report will be sent directly
to your doctor. Reports are available within 24 hours. Your doctor will discuss the results
of the exam with you.