Contact Us: 734-712-3456

Bone Density, Bone Densitometry or Bone Mineral Density (BMD) is a procedure that uses X-ray to determine bone strength. The purpose of BMD is to identify bone mass, detect bone loss and determine bone quality. This can help in the early detection of osteoporosis before fractures occur, help determine the likelihood of future fractures and predict the rate of bone loss.

 

Bone Density procedures include:

  • Bone Density Appendicular (forearm)
  • Bone Density Axial (hips and spine)

 

For your convenience, Bone Density is located in the Women's Health Center at St. Joseph Mercy Ann Arbor 5320 Elliott Drive 734-712-5927.

If you have questions regarding the procedure your physician has ordered, please call (734) 712-8420 Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m.-4:30 p.m. to be connected with specialized staff that can answer your questions.

 

Please call 734-712-1313 or 1-800-396-1313 and fax your order to 734-712-1380 or 800-338-9865 Monday-Friday, 8 a.m.-6p.m. to schedule your exam.

Billing questions

Depending on your procedure, you may receive two bills.

  • One bill is for the facility fee where you were seen.
  • The second bill is from Huron Valley Radiology, P.C. for the radiologist interpretation of your procedure.

Saint Joseph Mercy Health System
734-712-3700, 
800-676-0431
Monday - Friday,
8:00 a.m. - 6:30 p.m.

Huron Valley Radiology, PC, 866-744-1452
Monday - Thursday,
8:00 a.m. - 7:00 p.m.
Friday
8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Request a price estimate

To request an estimate call 734-712-1500 or fill our web form.

Frequently Asked Questions

Patient Resources

Frequently Asked Questions

Why measure bone density?
Did you know that 54 million Americans have low bone density or osteoporosis?  In fact, about 1 in 2 women and up to 1 in 4 men over the age of 50 will break a bone due to osteoporosis (nof.org/learn/basics). The association between low bone density and osteoporotic fracture is similar to the association between cholesterol and heart disease, or blood pressure and stroke.  Like cholesterol level and blood pressure, bone density is a risk factor that can be changed. You can’t do much about other risk factors such as age, sex, race, or genetic background, but low bone mass can be prevented and treated. Your physician can use the results of a bone density test to determine if medication to prevent or treat osteoporosis is advisable for you.

Is a bone density scan the same as a bone scan?
No.  The two studies are often confused because they sound alike, but they are different techniques used for different purposes. A bone scan is a nuclear medicine study used to look for cancer, stress fractures, and other bone or joint problems. It does not measure bone density and is not used to diagnose osteoporosis.

How do I prepare for a bone density scan?
No special patient preparation is necessary. We only ask that you don’t wear anything with buttons, snaps, or zippers from the waist down. Wearing pants with an elastic waistband will allow you to remain fully clothed during the study. Please bring the bone densitometry requisition from your referring physician.

If you have had any X-rays using oral contrast or barium, please wait one week before having a bone density scan. If you have had any nuclear medicine procedures, please check with your referring physician to verify when you can have a bone density scan completed.

What can I expect to happen during my bone density scan?
Bone density scan is a painless, non-invasive test. You will be asked to lie still and quiet on a padded table, but you will be able to breathe normally. The study lasts only a few minutes. The X-ray dose you will be exposed to is extremely low, similar to what you would receive on a long-distance airplane flight.

How will I get the results?
The results of your bone density scan will be sent to your referring physician within approximately ten business days. You should arrange to discuss the results with your physician.

You may also gain access to your results utilizing the SJMHS Patient Portal (must be previously registered to utilize). Reports are typically available on the Patient Portal 5 days post exam.

How do I obtain a copy of my report or images?

To obtain a copy of your report or images, please contact the Imaging Results Center (IRC) at 734-712-RADS (7237) or fill out an online request for imaging results. Note: The IRC requires 24 business hours notice to fulfill your request. You will be able to pick up your material at the location you specified and will be required to present a photo ID and sign a release at the time of pickup. 

How can I find out the cost of a SJMHS imaging procedure?

Please refer to the general FAQ’s for information on how to obtain price estimates for mammography procedures. Patient’s may call the SJMHS estimate line at 734-712-7392 (option 3 for facility estimates)

SJMHS also offers financial assistance program through the financial counseling department is reachable at 734-712-2009.

Who can I call if I have billing questions?
Depending on your procedure, you may receive two bills.

  • One bill is for the facility fee where you were seen.
  • The second bill is from Huron Valley Radiology, P.C. for the radiologist interpretation of your procedure.

If you have questions about your bill from:

  • Saint Joseph Mercy Health System, call 734-712-3700 or toll-free 800-676-0431 Monday - Friday, 8:00 a.m. - 6:30 p.m.
  • Huron Valley Radiology, PC, call toll-free 866-744-1452 Monday - Thursday, 8:00 a.m. - 7:00 p.m. and Friday from 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.