What is the test?
This test, which is also called bone densitometry, uses specialized x-rays to measure the thickness and strength of your bones. In most cases the spine and hip are scanned; in some cases, the forearm is also included. Various scanners use different techniques. The one used most often is dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry (DXA). Quantitative ultrasound, which does not involve x-rays, may also be used.
When bones are somewhat thin, the condition is called osteopenia. When bones become very thin, the condition is called osteoporosis. Bone density tests provide a precise measure of whether you have osteopenia or osteoporosis.
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