A bone density scan is a way to measure the strength of your bones. The test, also called a DEXA scan, uses X-rays to measure how many grams of calcium and other bone minerals are packed into a segment of bone.
The bones that are commonly tested are the spine, hip and sometimes the forearm. The test calculates your bone mineral density and translates this value into a number. This number can be compared to your subsequent scans to determine the effects of osteoporosis on your body. Your bone mineral density (BMD) is also compared to reference standards to determine if you are at risk for fractures.
Low bone density is usually caused by osteoporosis resulting in reduced bone strength or “brittle bones”. The bone density test is painless and uses a very low dose of radiation.
Beginning at age 50, the American Medical Association (AMA) recommends having a baseline screening. The main reason to have the test is to find and treat serious bone loss, called osteoporosis, and prevent fractures and disability. Many people get a bone-density test every few years.
Once your scan is complete, a Radiologist will examine the images. Your physician will receive the images and report via PACS and fax. Contact your physician directly to discuss your results.
We invite you to experience the UCI difference. With two locations to serve you, University Center Imaging has the specialized staff necessary to assist with all your imaging needs. Schedule your appointment today with a member of the UCI Scheduling Team.