An iDXA, or dual energy absorptiometry scan uses a low dose of X-ray to create a picture that gives an overview of body composition. An iDXA scan shows an individual’s bone, fat, and lean muscle tissue. The scan is used by athletes to customize workouts and determine areas of the body which may need strengthening. It’s also used to create an accurate assessment of body health, skeletal health, and body fat, and to determine health risk factors based on body composition. It may be utilized by doctors to help design a weight loss program in overweight patients. It may also be used for older or ill patients to test bone density.
iDXA is noninvasive, painless, and safe, involving only trace amounts of radiation. The patient lies fully clothed on a table while the scanner passes above. The scan lasts several minutes. iDXA is much more accurate at establishing a patient’s body composition than BMI, skinfold tests, or other methods.
Preparing for your procedure
There are no special instructions for preparation of this procedure. Prior to the test, you’ll need to remove jewelry, eyeglasses or any other metal objects that may obscure the image. Notify your doctor and technician if you are pregnant prior to an iDXA scan.