As people age, especially menopausal women, the bones can weaken and can break with only a minor fall. This problem is called osteoporosis. Bone densitometry can check the strength of your bones quickly and easily.
How is this test done? Two x-rays are taken while you lie comfortably on a table, and a computer does the rest. Your bone strength is compared to people with normal strong bones. There is no discomfort and the test will take about 20 minutes.
Why is this test important? Weak bones, a problem called osteoporosis, is the leading cause of suffering mainly due to broken hips and cracked backbones. These broken bones often require hospitalization, rehabilitation, and frequently cause death from complications. After age 65, the number of white women who break a hip is higher than the number who have a stroke, breast cancer, and diabetes. Over a lifetime, the risk of breaking a hip is greater than the risk of cancer of the breast, uterus, and ovary combined! More men break a hip than get prostate cancer! We now have medications which can increase your bone strength safely and easily.
Who should have the test?
- Women over 65 years of age
- Women under 65 who have gone through menopause, have had a hysterectomy, have low body weight, are inactive, smoke, are alcoholic, have a family history of osteoporosis, follow a low calcium diet, or those who take medications such as steroids and some seizure medicines
- Men, especially Caucasian and Asian men, who have special risks such as low body weight, inactivity, smoking, alcoholism, a family history of osteoporosis, a low calcium diet, and those who take medications such as steroids and some seizure medicines
- People who have broken bones with only minor trauma
Is this test expensive? Medicare and most insurance plans will cover most of the cost associated with this test. Please contact your insurance company for specific payment information.
Please ask your physician if you need a scan today!