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Dual energy absorptiometry (DEXA) scans are a common technique used to measure bone density. This completely painless procedure is easily performed and exposes the patient to minimal radiation.
A bone density scan or DEXA scan takes approximately 15 minutes. Patients are asked to lie on a table. A small x-ray will scan your lumbar spine and both hips. Women are especially prone to develop osteoporosis after menopause, when they lose the protective effects of estrogen, while men usually are
affected less frequently. Vertebral and hip fractures are common consequences of osteoporosis.
Risk Factors For Developing
Gender - Your chances of developing osteoporosis are greater if you are a woman. Women have less bone tissue and lose bone more rapidly than men because of the changes involved in menopause.
Age - the older you are, the greater your risk of osteoporosis. Your bones become less dense and weaker as you age.
Body size - Small, thin-boned women are at greater risk
Ethnicity - Caucasian and Asian women are at highest risk. African-American and Latino women have a lower but significant risk
Family history - Susceptibility to fracture may be, in part, hereditary. People whose parents have a history of fractures also seem to have reduced bone mass and may be at risk for fractures.
Sex hormones - abnormal absence of menstrual periods (amenorrhea), low estrogen level (menopause), and low testosterone level in men.
A lifetime diet low in calcium and
Use of certain medications, such as glucocorticoids or some anticonvulsants
An inactive lifestyle or extended bed rest.
Excessive use of alcohol.
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