Bone Density Testing
Bone mineral density testing is used to detect osteoporosis, or thinning of the bones. This condition most often affects women after age 50. The test is a painless procedure that measures bone strength and quality in the spine and hips. Also called DEXA or dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry, it is usually performed in women around the time of menopause.
Bone density testing can detect as little as 1-3 percent bone loss with one-tenth the radiation exposure of a chest X-ray. In comparison, a general X-ray is unable to detect osteoporosis until bone loss reaches 30 percent.
Bone density tests are performed at:
Greenwich Hospital’s Diagnostic Imaging Center
2015 W. Main Street
Our Bone Density Technologists
Greenwich Hospital’s bone density technologists are accredited by the American Registry of Radiologic Technology and licensed by the State of Connecticut.
Why would I need a bone density test?
A bone density test is used to diagnose osteoporosis and evaluate your risk for fracture. This allows for prevention and early treatment of bone loss. Periodic testing helps your physician track the success of treatment and allows for adjustments before symptoms develop.
Who should not have a bone density test?
Women who are, or may be, pregnant should not have any type of bone density exam.
What can I expect?
A complete bone density study typically measures bone density in two sites — the hips and lower spine. You will lie on a table while a specialized X-ray tube passes over your body and takes measurements. The initial test is used as a reference for comparison with future measurements.
The procedure takes about 20 minutes.