A DEXA scan measures the density of your bones and can help find out if you are at a higher risk of osteoporosis. The scan can also detect other potential bone disorders and conditions, such as osteopenia, brittle bone disease, and osteomalacia.

The scan is quick, easy and painless. You will lie flat for around 20 minutes while the scanner takes images of your spine, hip or forearm. To ensure a smooth procedure we ask you to wear loose, comfortable clothing with no metal fastenings, zips or buttons. 

What is a DEXA scan?

A DEXA scan measures the density of your bones and can diagnose if you are at a higher risk of bone disorders and conditions, such as osteoporosis. You may need a DEXA scan if you have (or have had) any of the following: 

  • Osteoporosis, or a family history of;
  • Fracture after a minor fall or injury
  • Early menopause or early hysterectomy
  • A family history of fractures
  • Low body mass index (BMI) < 21
  • Suffer from an eating disorder
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Inflammatory bowel conditions (irritable bowel syndrome, Crohn’s disease)
  • Are on medication which may increase the risk of osteoporosis
  • Hyperthyroidism (overactive thyroid)

What happens after the DEXA scan?

You can return to work or head home straight after your scan. The images will be reviewed and a report sent to your healthcare specialist for diagnosis or further treatment. 

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