A bone density test determines if you have osteoporosis – a disease that causes bones to become more fragile and more likely to break. The exam uses advanced X-ray techniques to detect changes after about a 1% change, where traditional x-ray shows after a 40% change. The bones that are most commonly tested are located in the forearm, hip and spine.
The risk factors for osteoporosis include:
- Being female
- Advanced age
- Being Caucasian or Asian
- Low bone mass
- Being thin or having a small frame
- A sedentary lifestyle
- A family history of osteoporosis
- Estrogen deficiency as a result of menopause, especially early or surgically induced
- Anorexia nervosa
- Use of certain medications
- Cigarette smoking
- Excessive alcohol intake
Who should consider a bone density exam?
- all postmenopausal women under age 65 who have one or more additional risk factors for osteoporosis (in addition to being postmenopausal and female)
- all women age 65 and older regardless of additional risk factors
- postmenopausal women who sustain a fracture
- women who are considering therapy for osteoporosis if bone density testing would facilitate the decision
- women who have been on hormone replacement therapy (HRT/ERT) for prolonged periods
To schedule a bone density exam, call 818-708-5593.