DEXA or Dual Energy X-ray Absorptiometry is an extremely accurate process for measuring bone density. DEXA or DXA is an accurate and highly recommended process for bone mineral density measurements.
According to the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force website, DXA scanning is the gold standard for osteoporosis screening. The USPSTF also recommends that women over the age of 65 should have a DXA scan done to assess their BMD.
The DEXA process utilizes two unique X-ray beams, each a different energy level, to scan a patient’s bones. After deducting for tissue absorption, the bone mineral density can be concluded by the absorption of the energy from each of the x-ray beams.
The DEXA results, used in conjunction with the Frax calculator from the World Health Organization, can actually measure a person’s potential risk of bone mineral density issues.
This method is preferred over nuclear bone scans due to the multiple sensitivities of the latter process, to include metabolic diseases of the bones. The low levels of radiation that are used in the DEXA process make it very safe, so safe in fact that the amount of radiation received by a single DEXA screening has been compared to the amount of radiation absorbed while flying on a round trip from New York to Los Angeles.
There is no question that the benefits of DEXA scans far outweigh the extremely superficial risks of the scan itself. Due to the cost, safety, and accuracy of DEXA screening, it is by far the most advantageous bone mineral density and bone mineral content measuring process known today.