Hours: Monday – Friday, 7:00AM – 5:00PM
The Dual Energy X-ray Absorptiometry (DXA) measures the density of your bones using x-rays. It is a quick, painless, non-invasive scan that uses less radiation than other forms of imaging. This scan is used to help your provider diagnose and treat osteoporosis.
You will be asked to lie on your back on the exam table. The technologist may also ask you to position your legs to get the best images, which are typically of the spine and hip. The scanning device will then pass over those areas of your body that your provider needs to see. The exam takes approximately 10 minutes.
Osteoporosis is a condition where bones become porous. It occurs when the bones lose a significant amount of protein and mineral content. It is often called the “silent disease” because most patients don’t notice any symptoms until they get a fracture.
Risk factors include:
- Light skin
- Small, thin frame
- Advanced age
- History of fractures
- History of osteoporosis
- Early menopause
- Low calcium diet
- Lack of exercise
- Eating disorders
- Certain medications
- Alcohol and/or tobacco use
How to Prepare
DO NOT TAKE CALCIUM SUPPLEMENTS FOR AT LEAST 24 HOURS BEFORE EXAM
You may eat normally the day of the exam. Dress comfortably, avoiding garments that have zippers, belts or buttons made of metal. You may be asked to wear a gown.
Tell your technologist:
- If you have had a contract exam or barium enema, you may need to wait 10-14 days before undergoing a DXA scan.
- If you are pregnant or think you might be, you may not be a candidate for a DXA scan.