Bone Density Testing

Available at our Edina location

Osteoporosis is a condition in which the bones become weak and can break more easily. Breaking a bone is serious, especially when you’re older. About half of all women older than 50 will break a bone because of osteoporosis, and it is most likely to occur in the hip, spine and wrist.

Some women with osteoporosis lose height and become shorter, and it can affect posture, causing a stoop or hunch. This happens when the bones of the spine, called vertebrae, begin to break or collapse.

Early Recognition

You can’t feel your bones becoming weaker, but you could have osteoporosis now or be at risk for it without realizing it.  Fortunately, a bone mineral density test can tell if you have osteoporosis before you have these symptoms. This makes it possible to treat the disease early and prevent broken bones.  In addition, the FRAX tool uses information about your bone density AND other risk factors for breaking a bone to estimate your fracture risk for the next 10 years.

  • Bone Density Test: A bone density test is the only test that can diagnose osteoporosis before a broken bone occurs. This test helps to estimate the density of your bones and your chance of breaking a bone. The National Osteoporosis Foundation (NOF) recommends a bone density test of the hip and spine by a central DXA machine to diagnose osteoporosis. DXA stands for dual energy x-ray absorptiometry.
  • FRAX Assessment:  If your bone density test shows that you have low bone density (osteopenia), the fracture risk assessment tool called FRAX® can help estimate your chance of breaking a bone within the next 10 years. This makes it easier to decide whether you might benefit from taking an osteoporosis medicine. The FRAX® tool uses information about your bone density and other risk factors for breaking a bone to estimate your 10-year fracture risk.
  • You will receive a copy of your bone density testing and FRAX assessment for your records.  And after reviewing the results, you and your healthcare provider can develop a plan to protect your bones. For women of all ages, calcium, Vitamin D, and exercise are important to building and sustaining strong bones.

For more information please see the National Osteoporosis Foundation website at:

What should I do to prepare for my Dexa Scan?

  • Wear comfortable clothing without metal fasteners or ornaments You should not take any vitamin pills, calcium supplements or antacids such as Tums or Rolaids the morning of the exam.
  • Let us know if you have had a total hip replacement or any type of lumbar spinal surgery.
  • Inform us if you have participated in nuclear medicine studies within the 3 weeks preceding the exam.
  • Have no barium studies in the week preceding the exam.
  • You must not be pregnant.