Porter Hospital has acquired a new, advanced bone densitometry system that provides the image quality, accuracy and precision required for the earlier detection of osteoporosis. The Lunar iDXA will enable Porters physicians to more effectively diagnose and treat the disease by precisely measuring a patients bone and allowing for the detection of even the most minor changes, according to Radiology Department Manager Chris LaPointe. Our acquisition of the Lunar bone densitometry system raises the level of care in our facility to address the silent disease of osteoporosis, LaPointe said. We know today that osteoporosis is not a normal condition of aging, rather it is a disease that can be prevented. By investing in a leading bone densitometry system, our staff will have access to high resolution images for the precise detection of the smallest vertebral deformities to detect osteoporosis at its earliest stage, enabling immediate treatment to minimize deterioration of bone structure. Once thought to be a normal part of aging, it is now known that osteoporosis can be slowed and fractures avoided with early detection and treatment. According to the 2004 U.S. Surgeon Generals Report, 10 million Americans over the age of 50 have osteoporosis, while another 34 million have low bone mass and are at risk for developing the disease. The Surgeon General warns that if immediate action is not taken, half of all Americans over 50 will have weak bones from osteoporosis and low bone mass by 2020. Weak bones can often lead to painful and debilitating fractures, with the most common being the wrist, spine and hip. According to the Surgeon Generals report, 1.5 million American suffer a fracture because of osteoporosis and weak bones. The cost of a hip fracture for one individual can exceed $18,000 throughout their lifetime, while providing the care for bone fractures from osteoporosis costs the U.S. health system nearly $18 billion each year. The new equipment delivers a higher level of precision and accuracy for bone densitometry and body composition assessment, with unprecedented image detail and resolution, and the systems acquisition capabilities offer crisp, high resolution images of all skeletal sites, revealing vertebral deformities never seen before while providing doctors and patients with accurate measurements LaPointe said. As the one of the first hospitals in our area to offer this technology, Porter is committed to fighting osteoporosis in our community with leading-edge technology that will help our physicians provide excellent patient care, said PMC President James L. Daily.