After Your Operation

When should I get new DEXA Scan?

Because hyperparathyroidism takes calcium out of the bones, most of the patients at our Parathyroid Center have lower bone density than their peers. Some of you will have osteopenia, while others will have osteoporosis or even severe osteoporosis (if you have had a parathyroid tumor for 8 years or more). Several large medical studies have shown that the bones of parathyroid patients get better in almost all cases after successful parathyroid surgery, at an average rate of about 8% per year increase in bone density. Thus almost everybody will get better bones in the years following parathyroid surgery even though they are getting older. Because this process is slow, we recommend that you wait 1 to 1.5 years after parathyroid surgery to check your bone density (a DEXA scan). If you had parathyroid surgery and didn’t have a DEXA scan within the previous 2 years, then you should probably get one within a few weeks of the operation so we can have a baseline of how good or bad your bones are.