What is the difference between a bone density test and a bone scan?
A bone density test (also known as bone densitometry, DEXA, or
DXA) uses x-ray technology to measure how many grams of calcium and other minerals
are present in one section of your bone. Bone with a high mineral content is considered
denser and therefore stronger. This test is used to determine if you have osteoporosis
A bone scan requires the injection of a radioactive tracer and the use
of a camera to take images of where the bone takes up the tracer. This procedure
is typically used to detect areas of bone growth, breakdown, or other damage, which
can indicate fracture, cancer, arthritis, or other problems.
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