Dexa – Scan (BMD)

A DEXA Scan measures Bone Mineral Density, and assesses a patient for the risk of osteoporosis. The scan is like an x-ray – a pain-free and incision-free procedure – that helps identify low bone density. DEXA stands for dual energy X-ray absorptiometry and is typically prescribed for patients above the age of 50 and categorized as high risk for osteoporosis.

The scan is performed by x-rays passing through the body. The x-rays pass through the tissue, bone and some through the body itself. A special detector measures the amount of x-rays that passes through the bones – which is then processed by a computer to arrive at a bone density metric.

To ensure safety of the patients, a DEXA Scan employs much lower levels of radiation than normal x-rays. However, they are not recommended for pregnant women.