What Is A DEXA Scan?
Dual energy X-ray absorptiometry (DEXA) scan is an enhanced form of x-ray technology that is used to measure bone loss. A DEXA scan provides a baseline for bone density and is a useful guide for physicians to monitor osteopenia, the pre cursor for osteoporosis. Osteoporosis is a disease that occurs when new bone tissue cannot be made fast enough to replace aging bone tissue. Osteoporosis is seen more often in women due to their hormonal changes when menopause occurs. A DEXA scan helps with monitoring your bone mass and serve as the only type of diagnostic imaging that can detect osteoporosis prior to a bone fracture.
What Are The Different Types Of DEXA Scans?
There are two main types of DEXA scans. The most common type is a central DEXA scan. A central DEXA scan utilizes a series of X-rays to assess bone density in your hips and spine. The second type of scan is a peripheral DEXA scan. A peripheral DEXA scan is a lot less common than a central DEXA scan. A peripheral scan uses a smaller diagnostic imaging machine to perform scans of your outer extremities such as your wrist, fingers, feet, and legs. Both types of DEXA scans are painless and non-invasive.
How Do I Prepare For A DEXA Scan?
DEXA scans require no special preparations prior to your appointment. The only requirement is to cease taking any calcium supplements at least 24 hours before your appointment. Based on the area being studied, your referring physician or our staff at SJRA may ask you to avoid wearing clothes or accessories with metal such as zippers, buttons, belts, and so forth. If you have any questions regarding DEXA scans, reach out to your referring physician or our team at SJRA here.