How to Analyze and Report Densitometry


Noor Medical Imaging Center*



Densitometry is the first step in diagnosing osteoporosis. In this article, an attempt is made to review how to analyze and report Dual X-ray Absorptiometry (DXA) based on ISCD guidelines, for the hip and lumbar spine.
It is necessary to check the name, age, gender, and height of the patient first. Bone Mineral density (BMD) values are based on the mentioned variables which are compared with the BMD of 25 to 30-year-old young women to produce T-score.

The specifications and version of the device should be mentioned since it is used in comparative
In lumbar and hip DXA, the patient`s position, how to control area, BMD, and choice of suitable N., hip, and vertebrae analysis should be explained.


In the diagnosis section, one of the following statements should be used:

- In postmenopausal women and men over 50 years old:

Normal if T-score ≥ -1
Low bone mass if -2.5< T-score < -1
Osteoporosis if T-score ≤ -2.5
Severe or established osteoporosis if

T-score ≤-2.5 with fragility fracture.
- In premenopausal women and men younger than 50 years old:

Within the expected range for age if Z-score > -2.0
Below the expected range for age if Z-score < -2.0
Z-score ≤ -2.0 must be evaluated for secondary causes.


In conclusion, patients are divided into low- risk and high-risk. The patients with T-score

≤ -2.5, femoral fracture risk of more than 3 percent or major fracture risk of more than 20 percent, and the patients with fragility fracture should be treated. Patients with Z-score ≤ -2.5 should be also evaluated for secondary causes of bone loss.

Other complementary studies done by DXA machine, like B.S, hip geometry, VFA, forearm lateral lumbar or distal femoral DXA, whole body, and body composition, should be mentioned.