At present, the diagnosis of osteoporosis is extremely relevant due to the prevalence of this condition. The indispensable help in solving this difficult task can provide osteodensitometry.
Osteodensitometry - is an objective (quantitative) method for assessing the density of bone tissue using different medical equipment.
In order to prevent or effectively treat osteoporosis, a complete diagnostic examination should be carried out which could be determined:
- Reduction of bone mass (mineral density of bones);
- Violation of the structure of the bones (that is, to diagnose the condition of the bone architectonics);
- Risk of fractures;
- The presence of concomitant conditions or diseases of the body that potentially can cause osteoporosis or have already led to its occurrence.
If the physician will have this information in full, he will be able to develop an optimal individual course of treatment and preventive measures.
Currently, in medicine, there are several methods of osteodensitometry widely used in medical practice, of which the most common method is ultrasonic computer osteodensitometrii.
The basis of this method is the definition of the rate of ultrasonic wave propagation when passing tissues of different density: the denser the tissue, the higher the rate of its passage. Therefore, the velocity of passing ultrasound waves due to well-mineralized (more dense) bone is higher than through the bone of reduced density with the phenomena of osteoporosis.
Ultrasound densitometry characterized by very high sensitivity to changes in bone density, because it is effective in the diagnosis of early signs of osteoporosis, the loss of bone density is not more than 3-4%, while in conventional X-ray diagnosed osteoporosis in violation bone mineralization in 25- 30%.
Advantages of ultrasonic densitometry
- Simplicity and promptness of the procedure (the duration of one study usually does not exceed 10 minutes);
- availability and relatively low cost compared with research methods as MRI (magnetic resonance imaging), CT (computed tomography);
- To pass this study does not require special patient training;
- The procedure is absolutely painless;
- the method has no contraindications, and thus can be widely used for pregnant and lactating women, children and persons undergoing radiotherapy and radiological research.
This allows extensive use of ultrasound densitometry, not only for initial diagnosis of the mineralization of bone and fracture risk, but also to evaluate the effectiveness of the therapy of osteoporosis and its correction. In addition, this method is widely used in screening studies to identify the risk of osteoporosis. And because it is completely harmless, it can take anyone without doctor prescription.