Bone densitometry worldwide: a global survey by the ISCD and IOF.

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Osteoporosis international : a journal established as result of cooperation between the European Foundation for Osteoporosis and the National Osteoporosis Foundation of the USA


In a global survey of fracture liaison services, most reported that DXA access met needs. However, adherence to basic DXA quality and reporting procedures was confirmed by only around 50% of institutions and many required education for operators/interpreters. Overall, there is significant variability in the access to, and quality of, DXA services worldwide.

INTRODUCTION: While the use of dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA) has been widely adopted worldwide for the assessment of bone mineral density, the quality of DXA facilities is unknown. To address this, a global survey of fracture liaison services (FLS) was conducted by the International Society for Clinical Densitometry (ISCD) and the International Osteoporosis Foundation (IOF) to assess the quality of their DXA facilities.

METHODS: A questionnaire for the accessibility and quality of DXA services was co-created by representatives of the ISCD and the IOF and made available to institutions who participated in the Capture the Fracture Best Practice Framework. From a list of 331 contacted invitees, 124 FLS centres responded; analyses were based on 121 centres with suitable data.

RESULTS: Over 70% of institutions reported that, for over 90% of the time, DXA access met service needs, and the scanning/reporting quality was perceived as excellent. However, 25% of DXA facilities reported not being accredited by a professional/governmental organization, and adherence to some basic DXA quality assurance and reporting procedures was confirmed by < 50% of services. Importantly, in excess of 50% of institutions stated that they desired ongoing education in osteoporosis and DXA for operators and interpreters.

CONCLUSION: There is significant variability in the access to and quality of DXA services for established FLS worldwide. Despite two decades of training initiatives in osteoporosis densitometry, many centres are falling short of the standards of the IOF-ISCD Osteoporosis Essentials criteria.

Clinical Institute

Orthopedics & Sports Medicine