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Bone Density Testing for Osteoporosis

 FPA also provides Bone Density testing for men and women. A Bone Density test is used to determine if someone has Osteoporosis. Osteoporosis is when there is a reduction in bone mass, or thinning of the bones, usually due to a loss of calcium. Sometimes a patient may not even be aware they have Osteoporosis until they break a bone.

What is a Bone Density test?
A Bone Density test, or DEXA, helps determine if someone is at risk for breaking a bone. It also helps monitor a patients' need for treatment and the effectiveness of the treatment
they are receiving.

Who needs a Bone Density test?
There are numerous reasons for an individual to have this test. These reasons may include the following:
  • Age
  • Family history of Osteoporosis
  • Caucasian or Asian descent
  • Smoker
  • Using excessive alcohol
  • Being thin or small-boned
  • Using hormone-replacement therapy
  • Nulliparity
  • Sedentary lifestyle
  • Low intake of calcium and Vitamin D
  • Long term steroid use or other long term medications
  • Unexplained back pain
  • Disorders of the bone or cartilage
  • Surgical menopause
  • Ovarian failure
  • Fractures
What to expect before a Bone Density test
There is no special preparation for this test.

What happens during a Bone density test?
You may be asked to remove certain articles of clothing. You may wear a gown. As you lie down on a table, a mechanical arm called an imager will pass over your body. The arm does not touch you. This creates a picture using a small amount of radiation. The results are measured in T-scores and Z-scores. The T-score is the number of units your bone density is above or below the average for an adult of your sex. The Z-score is the number of standard deviations above or below for someone of your age, sex, weight, and ethnic or racial origin.

After your test, the doctor will contact you to go over your results. Any further action will then be determined.

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