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BONE DENSITY

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What Is a Bone Density Scan?

Bone densitometry uses an advanced technology called OXA (short for dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry) that safely, accurately and painlessly measures bone mineral density.

During a comprehensive examination with OXA, the patient lays comfortably still on a padded table while the OXA unit scans two or more areas, usually the fracture-prone hip and spine.

Unlike typical x-ray machines, radiation exposure during bone densitometry is extremely low, less than the radiation exposure during a coast-to-coast airline flight. The entire process takes only minutes to complete, depending on the number of sites scanned. It involves no injections or invasive procedures, and patients remain fully clothed.

What will the exam be like?

You will meet the technologist who will be per forming your examination. This technologist has completed a rigorous course of education and training, and works under close supervision of the radiologist to assure the most accurate results from your examination.

Next, your technologist will gently position, and secure you to the imaging table. It is important that you be secured, because even the slightest movement during the exam can blur the image and result in the need of repeated scans.

At times, the examining radiologist will ask you to remain still and hold your breath so that the images can be taken. This operation might take several minutes.

How do I Prepare for the Exam?

Unless instructed otherwise, eat normally on the day of the exam; but avoid taking calcium supplements for at least 24 hours prior to your appointment.

Wear loose, comfortable clothing. Sweat suits and other casual attire without zippers, buttons, grommets or any metal are preferred. You should not have had a barium study, radioisotope injection, oral or intravenous contrast material from a CT scan or MRl within seven days prior to your DXA test.

How long does the Exam Take?

The examination itself usually takes 30 to 60 minutes. Time may vary significantly, depending on the nature of the study and other factors. Your doctor will advise you of the amount of time needed for your particular exam.

How do I Prepare?

Unless instructed otherwise, eat normally on the day of the exam; but avoid taking calcium supplements for at least 24 hours prior to your appointment. Wear loose and comfortable clothing. Sweat suits and other casual attire without zippers, buttons, grommets or any metals are preferred. You should not have had a barium study, radioisotope ijection, oral or intravenous contrast material from a CT scan or MRI within seven days prior to your DXA test.

How Will I Learn the Results?

The radiologist will study your exam and consult with your doctor. Your doctor will them meet with you to review the results.

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Osteoporosis prevention and treatment

Fortunately, there are steps you can take to prevent the development of osteoporosis. Even if you already have the disease, these measures, along with therapies your doctor may prescribe, can help slow its progression.

Make calcium-rich foods a regular part of your diet.

  • If you don’t eat the recommended amount of calcium, consider calcium and vitamin D supplements.
  • Exercise regularly. Walking, jogging and other weight-bearing activities are especially beneficial.
  • Don’t smoke.
  • Reduce your intake of soft drinks and coffee.
  • Drink alcoholic beverages in moderation.
  • If you are past menopause, talk to your doctor about hormone (estrogen) replacement therapy.

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Bone Density Images

 Testing Equipment
Bone Density Bone Density
 Hologic Logo
Bone Density
 Bone Density  Bone Density
 Bone Density  Bone Density

 

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