Densitometry as a diagnostic tool for the identification and treatment of osteoporosis in women

Institute for Clinical Systems Improvement
Record ID 32003000546
Authors' objectives:

This review aims to assess the available evidence on the effectiveness of densitometry as a diagnostic tool for the identification and treatment of osteoporosis in women.

Authors' recommendations: The ICSI Technology Assessment Committee finds that: Osteoporosis is a significant health issue reducing quality of life and resulting in significant treatment costs The value of preventive interventions has been proven. There is a range of possible interventions some of which can be initiated without BMD screening. The available options should be thoroughly explained to patients. SPA, SXA, DPA, DXA, QCT, and QUS are safe procedures. DXA is most commonly used because it allows measurements of the spine and hip and offers higher precision than other systems. Higher precision allows for repeat testing to assess the effects of treatment. QUS is more portable and less expensive but less precise than DXA. QUS may be used to encourage women toward therapy. (Conclusion Grade II) There is insufficient evidence to support mass screening for BMD; the need for BMD testing must be determined on an individual patient basis. Testing is of value when making individual decisions about therapies in lieu of estrogen replacement therapy as well as when an individuals decision about estrogen replacement therapy would be influenced by her knowledge of her BMD. The value of repetitive testing for monitoring the effects of therapy or for making decisions about interventions in elderly women is poorly understood. Yearly densitometry is not clinically indicated. Decisions about when to repeat testing must be individualized based on the patients health status, risk status, and baseline BMD. Each clinical center should establish their own short-term precision values.
Authors' methods: Review
Project Status: Completed
Year Published: 2000
English language abstract: An English language summary is available
Publication Type: Not Assigned
Country: United States
MeSH Terms
  • Densitometry
  • Female
  • Osteoporosis
Organisation Name: Institute for Clinical Systems Improvement
Contact Address: 8009 34th Avenue South, Suite 1200, Bloomington, MN, USA. Tel: +1 952 814 7060; Fax: +1 952 858 9675
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Copyright: Institute for Clinical Systems Improvement (ICSI)
This is a bibliographic record of a published health technology assessment from a member of INAHTA or other HTA producer. No evaluation of the quality of this assessment has been made for the HTA database.