A DXA scan can help to diagnose osteoporosis or identify if you are at risk of developing it in the future. It can also be used to detect other bone disorders and conditions, such as osteopenia, brittle bone disease, and osteomalacia.
What is a DXA scan?
A DXA scan uses low-dose X-rays to measure the density of your bones.
How will I know if I need a DXA scan?
Your health professional or consultant will inform you if you require a DXA scan. A DXA scan can help to diagnose osteoporosis or identify if you are at risk of developing it in the future. It can also be used to detect other bone disorders and conditions, such as osteopenia, brittle bone disease, and osteomalacia. In general, if your bone density is low, or you lack calcium or vitamin D, then there is a greater chance of a fracture.
How can I book a DXA scan?
To book a DXA scan, you will need a referral from a healthcare professional. If you have an outpatient consultation with a Nuffield Health consultant, they will refer you for a scan if clinically appropriate. You can also use a referral from your own GP or alternative healthcare professional, just email your referral to your chosen Nuffield Health hospital and a member of the team will call you back.
How should I prepare for a DXA scan?
It is recommended that you wear loose, comfortable clothing without metal buttons, snaps, or zips to your appointment.
What happens during a DXA scan?
A DXA scan is fast, simple, and completely painless. You will lie flat on your back on a padded table while a machine takes images of the spine, forearm, or hip.
How long does a DXA scan take?
The whole procedure should take approximately 20 minutes and you will be able to leave after your scan.
How/when will I receive my results?
Your results will be verified by a Radiologist and sent to your referring healthcare professional within a week of your appointment. Times may vary for specialist examinations, so we recommend checking with the hospital team before you leave. Your referrer may recommend a follow-up appointment to discuss your results.
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