Bone Mineral Density Scanning
Prairie Lakes Healthcare System offers bone mineral density scanning through the Radiology Department at Prairie Lakes Hospital. Bone mineral density scanning is a fast and painless method used to determine bone mass, or density. The test determines whether your bones are becoming affected by osteoporosis, a bone-thinning disease that often has no symptoms in its early stages.
Your doctor may conclude that a bone mineral density scan is for you if you are determined to be in an "at risk" category. If the results of the bone mineral density scan indicate you are in the beginning stages of osteoporosis, treatments are available that can increase your bone density. Your doctor will discuss what course of treatment is best for you.
Having a bone mineral density scan at Prairie Lakes Hospital is safe and painless. It is a non-invasive procedure that requires no patient preparation, such as fasting. The experienced staff in the radiology department assists you every step of the way. The bone mineral density scan itself is simple. It involves lying on a padded table while an L-shaped arm passes over your body. You are not enclosed and you can wear your own clothing, even your shoes.
The actual scan takes about 15 minutes. The scanning machine uses small amounts of radiation to produce the images that will indicate whether osteoporosis is evident or not. A qualified radiological technologist performs the scan and the images are read by a radiologist. Your doctor will discuss the results with you during your follow-up appointment.
To receive a free Bone Mineral Density Scanning brochure, which explains bone mineral density scanning services at Prairie Lakes Hospital, click here.
To schedule your bone mineral density scan, call the Prairie Lakes Central Scheduling Department at 605-882-7690.
Osteoporosis, or "porous bone," is a bone-thinning disease. As we get older, our bones become less dense and, subsequently, more brittle. Menopausal women may be more susceptible to rapid bone loss because of the body's decreased levels of estrogen during menopause. Osteoporosis could also be the result of many other factors including heredity and lifestyle habits for both men and women.
Early detection is essential in the fight against osteoporosis. However, it often goes undetected because osteoporosis may not exhibit any outward symptoms in its early stages. Undetected, the disease may progress and contribute to bone fractures, loss of height and limited mobility. Those affected by progressed osteoporosis are frequently distinguished by a humped back, known as "dowager's hump."
At Risk Factors
Individuals who are or may be at risk for developing osteoporosis should consult with a doctor about having a bone mineral density scan. Risk factors may include:
Having a family history of osteoporosis
Being postmenopausal or having early menopause
Having a small build
Drinking too much alcohol
Taking in too little calcium (now or as a child)
Taking certain medications such as steroids and thyroid hormones