A bone density scan can be an important part of women’s wellness
As part of our caring for the total health of women, our team talks to patients about osteoporosis. This is a condition that causes weak and brittle bones. We recommend that women who are 65 and older have a bone density scan. This is because age is the single biggest risk factor for this condition. Post-menopausal women produce less estrogen, and this hormone is vital for healthy bones.
We also recommend the test for women who are younger than 65 who have risk factors for osteoporosis, such as a history of fractures, a family history of osteoporosis, rheumatoid arthritis, long-term steroid treatment or a untreated hyperthyroidism. Our San Antonio OBGYNs will review your risk factors with you and discuss whether you need a bone scan.
A bone density scan is fast and painless
We perform this quick X-ray procedure on an outpatient basis. During a bone density scan, you lie on a table for a short time (usually 10 minutes or less). While you’re on the table, the machine scans your body, particularly your hip and spine. The scan determines your bone mineral density.
Interpreting your test results
When our San Antonio OBGYNs receive a “T” score after your bone scan. This score provides them with information about your risk for osteoporosis. A score between +1 and -1 of the standard deviation (SD) is considered normal. Results between -1 and- 2.5 (SD) are considered low bone density, or osteopenia. A score that is -2.5 or lower than the standard deviation indicates osteoporosis.
If your T-score tells our OBGYNs that you have low bone mass, or osteopenia, we will work with you to prevent osteoporosis and monitor your bone health. Having osteopenia does not necessarily mean that you will develop osteoporosis. However, it is very important that you work with your doctor to develop preventative strategies, and to keep track of your bones with a scan every two to five years.
If your T-score indicates that you have osteoporosis, our San Antonio OBGYNs will prescribe medication that will help slow or even reverse bone loss. You will also need periodic bone scans to monitor your bone loss.
We believe that a bone density scan is an important tool in the fight against osteoporosis and fractures. If you want to learn more, contact us. Our caring doctors and staff are here to help.