1357 Warwick Road, Knowle, Solihull, West Midlands, B93 9LW

What to Expect and How to Prepare for a DEXA Bone Scan

What to Expect During a DEXA/DXA Scan

A DEXA scan, or Dual-Energy X-ray Absorptiometry, is a straightforward and non-invasive procedure used to measure bone density. Here’s what you can expect during your visit:

  • Arrival and Registration: You’ll complete any necessary paperwork and check-in procedures upon arrival at the clinic.
  • Preparation: You may be asked to change into a gown, removing any clothing or jewellery that could interfere with the scan.
  • The Scan Itself: The scan typically takes about 10-20 minutes. You’ll lie on a padded table while a scanning arm passes over your body, emitting low-dose X-rays to measure bone density.
  • Comfort and Safety: The procedure is painless and requires you to remain still. The radiation exposure is minimal, much less than a standard X-ray.
  • Results: After the scan, a radiologist will analyse the results, which will be discussed with you by your healthcare provider.

How to Prepare for a DEXA Bone Scan 

Preparing for a DEXA scan is simple and helps ensure accurate results. Here are some tips:

  • Clothing: Wear loose, comfortable clothing without metal zippers, belts, or buttons. Avoid wearing any jewellery.
  • Diet and Supplements: Avoid taking calcium supplements for at least 24 hours before your scan. You can eat normally unless instructed otherwise by your doctor.
  • Medical History: Inform your doctor of any recent barium exams or contrast material used for CT scans or MRIs, as these can affect results.
  • Pregnancy: If there’s a possibility you could be pregnant, inform the clinic staff before the scan, as precautions may be needed to protect the fetus.

Why Get a DEXA Scan?

A DEXA scan is essential for diagnosing osteoporosis, assessing fracture risk, and monitoring the effectiveness of treatment. It is particularly recommended for postmenopausal women, individuals with a family history of osteoporosis, long-term steroid users, and those with certain medical conditions.

By understanding what to expect and how to prepare for a DEXA bone scan, you can ensure your appointment goes smoothly and provides accurate information about your bone health.

For more information please contact us here or check our DEXA scanning page. Alternatively, you can call us on 01564 732150 and one of our friendly staff members will be sure to help you with your query.