Screenings to Check for Osteoporosis

Bone density screenings will be offered to the public today and Saturday at two Valley discount drugstores at reduced fees.

For $30, individuals will be screened to detect signs of osteoporosis, a disorder characterized by a reduction in bone density and increased porosity and brittleness. The examinations will use the latest low-radiation scanning machine, called dPlexa.

Shula Grenough, director of business development at the Calabasas-based California Osteoporosis Institute, which is conducting the screenings, said that similar tests to measure bone density typically cost upward of $150.

"Osteoporosis affects 25 million Americans," Grenough said. "The test will help people to better understand the disease in order to combat it."

Following the six-minute scan, which emits radiation equivalent to passing through two metal detectors at an airport, a five-color printout shows where bones are at their strongest and weakest, she said.

A complete explanation of the results will be given after the tests, along with material on ways to prevent or reverse the effects of osteoporosis, she said.

Grenough recommends that women 40 or older and men older than 60 have their bone densities checked.

The screenings will be done today from noon to 7 p.m. at Sav-On Drugs, 18247 Sherman Way, Reseda.

Saturday's testing will be from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Sav-On Drugs, 23357 Mulholland Drive, Woodland Hills.

No appointment is necessary either day. Patients will be served on a first-come, first-served basis, Grenough said.

For information, call the institute at (800) 927-3001.

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