Many individuals are at risk for osteoporosis. This includes all women over the age of sixty five, postmenopausal women, people with an overactive thyroid or those who take steroids, among others. Because this serious condition can lead to bone fractures and physical pain, it is best to screen everyone at risk and catch it early. Ordinarily, this would mean a trip to the hospital imaging center for the patient, because most private practices or smaller medical offices do not have the equipment needed for the testing. With digital imaging, this is finally changing. A new bone density machine is available, called the Metriscan, that allows physicians to perform bone mineral density tests quickly in office.
This bone density machine essentially functions as a bone densitometer. It gauges how much optical density is apparent in the bone when it is exposed to light. At a hospital, the name of the test that is often given to check for bone mineral density is a DEXA, or dual energy x-ray absorptiometry, test. It utilizes two x-ray beams focused at the patient's bone, and it can determine how much light is absorbed by the bone, and then use that information to come up with how dense the bones are.
Rather than having to go to the hospital for this test, a primary care physician can instead use this bone density equipment to test for bone mineral density right at the medical office. One of the best parts of this bone densitometer is that the actual test only takes one minute to perform, making it quick, easy and painless for everyone involved.
The bone machine simply scans the patient's hand. From this, the physician can determine his or her bone mineral density, and the amount of risk for developing osteoporosis that he or she faces. The bone densitometer is a small piece of bone density equipment, fitting on the top of a desktop. It works in a similar fashion to a scanner.
The information obtained by the density machine is used to compute T and Z scores, which relate to a level of deviation average for the person's age and sex, as well as the level of deviation when compared to the average for a healthy young adult of the same sex. This bone densitometer will compute these scores for you, and print out the test results for you as well.
People over sixty-five and at greater risk for osteoporosis may be eligible for Medicare coverage for bone density machine testing. The bone density equipment is very easy to use, making it simple to get your office up and running with in-house bone testing. The bone density machine causes no pain in the patient, and uses only low radiation levels.
Bone density equipment such as this makes it much easier to detect early on low bone density machine in your patients, and take steps to prevent it from becoming worse.
In this article Jonathon Blocker writes about bone density equipment.