An advanced technology called DEXA (Dual-Energy X-ray Absorptiometry) allows the measurement of bone mineral and density content. DEXA uses considerably less radiation than conventional X-rays. These measurements can most accurately determine the presence and value of treatment for osteoporosis.
DEXA is a painless, comfortable examination that requires the patient to lay on his/her back. An extremely low dose of radiation is utilized to image two areas (usually lower spine and one hip). The computer will analyze this information and determine values based on bone density. Based on these values, your risk for fracture or developing osteoporosis can be interpreted.
When scheduled for this examination, it is best to wear clothing that does not have any metal (snaps, zippers, buckles, etc.) from your shoulders to your knees. It is important that you have not had a barium study, radioisotope injection (nuclear medicine), oral or intravenous contrast material from a CT or MRI exam within seven days prior to your DEXA scan.
For additional information, please visit Women's Imaging Center.