May is National Osteoporosis Month

What is Osteoporosis?     Aging and other risk factors often result in the bones becoming weak and more likely to break, leading to the disease known as Osteoporosis.  Osteoporosis can occur in both men and women at any age, but it is most common in older women.

What is Bone Density Testing?     A bone density scan, also referred to as a DEXA Scan, measures bone density which is directly related to bone strength.  The DEXA Scan is a simple, painless procedure which takes approximately 15 minutes.  Using a low dose of radiation, the scan can detect bone loss in the spine, hips and extremities (most commonly the wrist).

Who needs Bone Density Testing?

  • Women age 50 and older
  • Post-menopausal women
  • Family history of osteoporosis
  • Thin or small build
  • Previous broken bones or height loss
  • Inactive lifestyle
  • Smokers
  • Excessive alcohol intake
  • Prolonged Hormone Replacement Therapy
  • Prolonged exposure to steroids

How is Osteoporosis Treated?     Diagnosing osteoporosis in its early stages before broken bones occur will enable your physician to formulate a plan of treatment to help protect your bones.  While there is no cure, there are steps you can take to prevent or slow the effects of osteoporosis, a few of which include:

  • Increased calcium and Vitamin D intake
  • Diet and exercise
  • Prescription medications

Talk to your primary care physician about scheduling a bone density test at Carolina Breast Imaging Specialists.  Testing is generally covered by insurance plans; we make it convenient and easy!