T-score : what it means

Bone density test:  t-score results. What does your t score mean? When you have a dexa scan to evaluate your bone density, your results will be reported as a t-score and a z score. The t score shows you how your bone density compares with that of a 30 year old person.  (They choose to compare bone density with 30 year olds because 30 is when your bones should be a 'peak' bone density.)

If you are older than 30 years when you have the bone density test, your number is likely to be a negative one UNLESS you have really dense bones.  So, if you are 72 you are very likely to have a low T score. You might want to look at your Z score also. That is the number that compares your bone density with other persons your own age.  But it is really worth discussing both your T score and your Z score with your health care provider.  


So What do your T-score numbers actually mean?

Your T-score shows how dense your bone are.  Scores of +1.0 are good. Scores  between +1 and - 1 show normal bone mineral density. Scores between -1 and -2.5 indicate Osteopenia (thin bones). And Scores that are less than -2.5 indicate Osteoporosis or porous bones.  Such scores could be reported as - 2.7, -3.0 etc.  Note, that scores of -3.0 or lower show serious Osteoporosis. 

Your report probably also gives a Z score.  The column  marked Z score compares your bone mineral density with others of your own age.  This offers you some context for your bone mineral  density measurement. Example: it is expected that older adults would have lower bone density than young adults. 

But really,  do not be led astray. You Z score  may not be so comforting at all. If you have reached an age when most people your age are at risk of fracture because of Osteoporosis, you may not be happy to have bone density just like them. You probably would prefer to have bones that are NOT likely to fracture at all.

You will want to increase your bone density over these next months. And you can do that.  Click on the link if you want to find: Natural Methods to increase bone density.    If your health care provider suggests that you begin to take medication to reverse your bone loss, you can educate yourself about these medications and their likely side effects. Just go to Pharmaceutical drugs that increase bone density.

 Finally, while you are waiting for your treatments (natural or pharmaceutical) to work, you will want to do all that you can to prevent falling.

And one of the best ways to do that is to increase your balance.


Go to: Osteopenia Index page

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