Physicians warn that young women are overtreated for osteoporosis

The New York Times “Well” blog says that “recent reports suggest that too many younger women are being evaluated and treated for bone loss when they should not be.”

According to the article, “the standard in bone screening is dual energy X-ray absorptiometry, or DXA, a relatively inexpensive test that measures bone mineral density and is usually covered by insurance.”

Among physician groups, the consensus is that healthy women who are not facing any particular risk to osteoporosis should not be tested before the age of 65.

However, the Times notes that “this year the American Academy of Family Physicians cited the scans among five tests that are often performed unnecessarily and may lead to overtreatment of patients.”

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