Dexa scan is used to test bone density to check the strength of your bones. DEXA is known as Dual X-Ray Absorptiometry and is the most effective method to diagnose osteoporosis. The DEXA scanning can be done in two areas, the hip and the spine. It also focuses on the forearm. It helps doctors to detect fractures of the bone. The scan can be completed within 10-20 minutes. The process is painless, and the radiation from the scan is very low. It is similar to an X-Ray, and the patient has to lie on a table, and the scanner passes through the body.

dexa scan

How does DEXA Scan Work?

Two X-ray beams are produced by the Dexa scanner, a high energy and a low energy ray. The amount of X-ray beam passed through the bone is measured by the machine. This measurement varies depending on the thickness of the bone. The difference between the beams is measured to determine your bone density. In the result, you will get a T score that determines your bone health. A T score ≥ -1.0 is normal bone density, T score between -1.0 and -2.5 is low bone density, and T Score of -2.5 or less is osteoporosis. A Z score is a comparison of your bone density score with a person of your age and body size.

Newborn screening

DEXA has been given gold standards for evaluating Bone Mineral Density in Adults, but recently it is being used in paediatrics as well. There is a prospective study to assess BMD in term infants. Since Bone Mineral Density is turning into a growing problem during early life, DEXA is the ideal method to check for an accurate mineral content of bones in newborns. It is a preferred option for newborns these days as the exposure to radiation is low, and the scan is faster.


DEXA scanning is the best method to measure bone density for conditions including spinal deformities or when you have a spinal injury. It is also essential for vertebral compression fractures or degenerative diseases. It helps to measure calcium in the blood vessels.

Dexa scanning is accurate as it measures changes in bone density over a period or how bones respond to drug therapy. The radiation exposure is low when compared to other tests like radiographic absorptiometry or CT scan. The exposure is far less than a chest X-ray. DEXA scanners are far more efficient than osteoporosis screeners. It tests the bone density of the entire body including spine and extremities. What more, the cost of DEXA scanning is affordable when compared to other bone mineral density tests.