Barriers to Providing Dual Energy X-ray Absorptiometry Services to Individuals with Spinal Cord Injury

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Morse LR, Geller A, Battaglino RA, Stolzmann KL, Matthess K, Lazzari AA, Garshick E: Barriers to providing dual energy x-ray absorptiometry services to individuals with spinal cord injury. Am J Phys Med Rehabil 2009;88:57–60.

To assess barriers to bone mineral density testing in individuals with chronic spinal cord injury, a cross-sectional study of 20 individuals with spinal cord injury was conducted with assessment of physical and logistical barriers to dual energy x-ray absorptiometry scanning. We identified several barriers, including scanner design and configuration in the scanning room that limited accessibility, increased typical scanning time, and made additional staff necessary. For dual energy x-ray absorptiometry to become a routine component of ongoing care in spinal cord injury medicine, we recommend the following changes: (1) install ceiling-mounted hydraulic lifts and grab bars to facilitate transfers in the scanning room; (2) increase staffing during scans; (3) increase time allotment for scans; (4) install the scanner in an adequately-sized room; and (5) partner with administrators and staff to raise awareness of access issues faced by individuals with spinal cord injury.

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