This special type of x-ray exam of the low spine and hip or wrist is used to determine the amount of bone mineral density. A DEXA scan is used to detect osteoporosis or pre-osteoporotic conditions. It uses very low dose radiation and computer analysis to determine the bone density.
You may eat and drink normally before the exams however avoid taking calcium supplements on that day until after the exam. If you have had a recent CT scan with oral contrast, an UGI or a Barium Enema, you will need to wait at least a week before having the DEXA scan. Try to wear comfortable clothes without any metal on them.
This procedure takes approximately 15 to 20 minutes.
When you come for the appointment, please sign in at the front desk in our main lobby. Your personal information and insurance information will be taken by the admissions personnel. You will be called back to the radiology department and asked several pertinent questions by the bone densitometry tech. You will then be asked to lie on a padded table on your back. The scanning arm comes across the top of your body however; it never encloses your body. You will not feel anything during the exam. You may be asked to sit in a chair next to the table while the scanning arm goes over your positioned wrist.
After the exam, you will be free to leave and continue your normal activities. Your physician will receive a report from the radiologist within 2-3 working days.