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Who Needs a Bone Density Screening?

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It is easy to assume your bones are strong and healthy, as they have served you well for most of your life. However, some diseases, genetic conditions, nutritional concerns and other factors can change the density and strength of your bones. Bone density screening is a test that looks at your bone health, which can be used as a diagnostic tool to determine if you have health issues affecting your bone strength.

What Is Bone Density Testing and How Is It Performed?

Bone density testing determines the level of minerals found in your bones. The higher concentration of minerals like calcium, the less likely the bones are to break from everyday activities. This test is used to diagnose osteoporosis, which is a weakening of the bones due to lost minerals and density.

Bone density tests are performed using a special type of X-ray. It is usually performed on bones that are more prone to severe fractures in people with osteoporosis. These include the spinal bones (vertebrae), hip bones and arm bones. Those with a higher risk of osteoporosis or already diagnosed with osteoporosis may be recommended to have regular bone density testing to monitor their bone health and determine the best treatment.

Who Is at High Risk for Osteoporosis?

Osteoporosis or weak bones can occur for many reasons. Typically, older women are at a higher risk due to changes in their bone density post-menopause. However, many factors can affect bone density and strength. Some of the risk factors for osteoporosis include:

  • Gender – females are at higher risk
  • Age – older adults have an elevated risk
  • Drugs – certain medications can pull minerals from the bones
  • Genetics – a family history of osteoporosis increases your risk
  • Body frame – smaller-framed individuals are more likely to have a low bone density
  • Hormone imbalance – thyroid, menopause, low testosterone and other hormone imbalances affect bone density
  • Certain diseases – arthritis, kidney disease, cancer and other diseases increase the risk
  • Lifestyle choices – tobacco use, street drug use and poor diet can all contribute to osteoporosis

Your doctor can determine whether you are at higher risk for osteoporosis and if a bone density test could be beneficial. If you have osteoporosis, some treatments can be used to reduce your risk of bone fractures and spine problems. At Primary Care Joliet, we offer bone density testing and osteoporosis diagnosis at our facilities in Joliet and Wilmington, IL. Call today to schedule your bone density scan.

Posted on behalf of Primary Care of Joliet

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East Joliet Office

2025 S. Chicago St
Joliet, IL 60436

Clinic hours

Mon - Fri: 8AM - 5PM

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West Joliet Office

2202 Essington Rd
Joliet, IL 60435

Clinic hours

Mon - Fri: 8AM - 5PM

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Wilmington Office

121 Robert P. Weidling Dr
Wilmington, IL 60481

Clinic hours

Mon, Tue, Thur, Fri: 8AM - 4PM
Wed: closed

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