Checking bone density is simple, quick, noninvasive and primarily recommended for women once they reach menopause. Bone density scanning, also known as dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA) or bone densitometry, is an enhanced X-ray that is used to measure bone loss. This non-invasive medical test is most often performed on the lower spine and hips. It helps physicians diagnose osteoporosis, a condition that affects women after menopause.
Osteoporosis is the gradual loss of calcium. This loss of calcium causes bones to become thinner, more fragile and more likely to break.
Preparing for a Bone Density Screening
On the day of the exam, eat and drink normally, but do not take calcium supplements for at least 24 hours before your exam.
Wear loose, comfortable clothing, avoiding items with zippers and belts or metal buttons. You may be asked to remove some or all of your clothes and to wear a gown during the exam. You may also be asked to remove jewelry, eyeglasses and any metal objects or clothing that might interfere with the X-ray images. To learn more about bone densitometry, click here.
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