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New bone density scanner now in place at hospital PDF Print E-mail


By Jan Rahn

Managing Editor

Perkins County Health Services is happy to announce that a new bone density scanner is now in place in the Radiology Department, saving patients the inconvenience of having to schedule around a mobile unit’s arrival. 

The new $45,000 machine was installed on Sept. 21 and is already in use. Staff were trained on it the following two days and scanning began on Friday, Sept. 24. 

Several patients have already been scanned and personnel are hoping to test between 15-30 patients per month. Both male and female should have the test done. 

It will be available weekdays from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. and on Saturdays from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. 

Perkins County Health Services (PCHS) is the only facility in the area, aside from North Platte, that has a stationary bone density scanning unit with daily times available. 

Located adjacent to the mammography room, the newest state-of-the-art machine at PCHS is yet another example of the many ways the medical facility uses preventative measures to care for people in the community and surrounding region. 

A bone density scan is a low-dose x-ray which checks an area of the body such as the hip, hand or foot for signs of mineral loss and bone thinning. 

Approximately one in two women and one in four men over age 50 will have an osteoporosis related fracture in their lifetime.

“So it’s a worthwhile 10 minutes out of your life every two years to have it done,” said Adrianne Turner, director of radiology. “Taking care of your bone health, whether you are male or female, is the most important thing a person can do to increase his/her chances of a long and healthy life without fractures from poor bone health.” 

Other statistics that make it important to have a painless, easy bone scan include:

• 10 million people are affected with osteoporosis.

• 40 million people are at risk for osteoporosis.

• 80 percent are females

• 20 percent are males

• These numbers are cause for over two million fractures each year

Those interested in scheduling an appointment for a bone density scan may contact the Perkins County Health Services Radiology Department at 308-352-7216.

Most insurance companies, including Medicare, cover this test under the preventative care section—once every two years or more often if indicated by a doctor to monitor calcium levels.