A bone density test uses a small amount of X-ray to measure the amount of mineral in the bones of your lower back, hip and sometimes forearm.  This information is used to tell your health care provider if your bone density is normal or if you are at risk for osteoporosis.

Preparing for Your Bone Density Exam

There is no special preparation for a bone density exam.

What to Expect at Your Appointment

You will wear your street clothes or a patient gown and lie on your back on a padded table. A board certified technologist will operate the bone density machine which will move back and forth as it measures your bone density. The machine is very open and does not feel "closed in." You will not be given any injections or medications for this test.

Please arrive 15 minutes prior to your appointment time.

Bone Density Test Results

A board-certified provider reviews your images and provides the results to your ordering provider typically within three business days. Please contact your provider for results. If you are enrolled in MyChart®, you can find your results there as well.

Find a Bone Density Test Location Near You

More Bone Density Resources

The American College of Radiology and the Radiological Society of North America offer detailed information on bone densitometry (DEXA), including a video. Learn more.