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Osteoporosis

Should a Bone Density Test Taken for Losing 2.5 Inches in Height?

06/18/2007

Question:

Hello. I had a bone density sreening of my left ankle, and it was -1.4. I also receioved some literature telling me to see a physician. My doctor said the results werw not important, and would not order a Bone Density Test. I am age 54, and have lost 2 1/2 inches in height since 2001. Please tell me what to do. Should I have a Bone Density Test? Where can I get one, if my dopctor refuse

Answer:

Bone density tests are usually not recommended for women at your age unless there are significant risk factors.  A height loss of 2.5 inches is of concern and should be investigated.  Do you have scoliosis?  Do you have degenerative disk disease?  Have you had a prior vertebral compression fracture?  These conditions can all result in height loss, and depending on the answers to your questions, you may or may not need a bone density test of your spine and hip.  You can always get a second opinion from your gynecologist or internist, whichever one you have not seen.

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Response by:

Margery   Gass, MD Margery Gass, MD
Formely, Professor, Clinical Obstetrics & Gynecology
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati