Bone Densitometry (Dexa Scan) at Bon Secours Hospital, Cork. The

Bone Densitometry (Dexa Scan) at Bon Secours Hospital, Cork.
The provision of a Dexa scan is part of the range of services available at our
Diagnostic Imaging Centre in Cork. Bone Densitometry (Dexa Scanning) is a method
of measuring the density of bones. Normally used as a form of screening, using lowdose X-rays, this test is safe, painless and accurate. It is free from complications and
can be repeated many times. It is used extensively in the assessment of those at risk
for osteoporosis.
The entire test will take approximately 15 minutes. Appointments are available
Monday to Thursday with accompanying report provided by a Consultant Radiologist
with respect to appropriate treatment if necessary.
Your Dexa Scan
This information leaflet is intended to provide general information about your Dexa
scan. If you have any queries about your Dexa scan please do not hesitate to contact
us: 021-4801656.
What is a Dexa scan?
A Dexa scan or Bone Density scan is a quick scan using X-rays to measure your bone
density and asses your risk of Osteoporosis or Osteopenia. Bone density is strongly
recommended if you:
Are a post-menopausal woman and not taking estrogen.
Have a personal or maternal history of hip fracture or smoking.
You are a post-menopausal woman.
Are a man with clinical conditions associated with bone loss.
Use medications that are known to cause bone loss, including corticosteroids
such as Prednisolone.
And various anti-seizure medications and certain barbiturates, or high-dose
thyroid replacement drugs.
Have type 1 diabetes, liver disease, kidney disease or a family history of
Have a high bone turnover, which shows up in the form of excessive collagen
in urine samples.
Have a thyroid condition, such as hyperthyroidism.
Have a parathyroid condition, such as hyperparathyroidism.
Have experienced a fracture after only mild trauma.
Have had x-ray evidence of vertebral fracture or other signs of osteoporosis.
PLEASE INFORM YOUR PHYSICIAN if you recently had a barium
examination or have been injected with a contrast material for a CT scan or
radioisotope for a bone scan.
You may have to wait 10 to 14 days before undergoing a Dexa test.
Who will I see?
Throughout your Dexa examination you will be cared for by a highly skilled
Is it Safe?
Dexa scanning uses a very small amount of X-ray radiation to obtain images. The
risks associated with a Dexa scan are considered low risk.
If you have any questions about the X-ray dose you can speak to your referring doctor
or you can contact the X-ray department to speak with a Radiographer.
What are the benefits?
Medical Imaging can bring very real benefits to patients. The results of your Dexa
scan can help your doctor make the right diagnosis to any health issues you have been
Before your Dexa scan.
No preparation is required, however if you are/think you may be pregnant, please
make the Radiographer aware before the examination begins.
The day of your Dexa scan.
Please check-in with our administrative staff at X-ray reception and you will be
shown where to wait for your Dexa scan. You may be asked to undress into a hospital
gown in a cubicle adjacent to the Dexa room. You will be asked to complete a
comprehensive questionnaire that the Consultant Radiologist will use with your scan
images to help create a report.
What happens during a Dexa scan?
A Radiographer/nurse will escort you into the Dexa room and explain the test to you.
You will be asked to lie on the scanner table. You will be given a leg rest and the
scanner will be positioned over the correct area. During the scan you will not feel any
discomfort or pain. The Dexa scan will take approximately 15 minutes.
Do I need an X-ray dye injection?
An injection of X-ray dye is not necessary for this test.
After your Dexa scan.
After your Dexa scan you will feel no ill effects and you may continue with your
normal daily activities.
When will I get results?
The acquired Dexa images will be read by a Consultant Radiologist after your visit. A
report will be sent to your referring doctor within one working week.
Additional Information.
Please make us aware of any special needs you have (e.g. mobility, if you are hard of
hearing, if you have poor eyesight)
If you have any questions you can speak with your doctor or contact the X-ray
department on 021-4801656.
If you are unable to attend please contact as soon as possible and we can arrange a
new appointment for you.