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Mindways QCT Comes of Age by Inclusion into FRAX

Austin, Texas (PRWEB) May 15, 2013

Measuring bone mineral density (BMD) to establish the presence of osteoporosis or low bone density is often performed using DXA; with the BMD measurement used in the FRAX® tool for fracture risk calculation. The inclusion of Mindways QCT bone density measurement into FRAX®, now offers patients and physicians an accurate and cost-effective alternative assessment method for determining osteoporotic fracture risk.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) Fracture Risk Assessment Tool(FRAX®) is a web-based tool used to calculate absolute fracture risk to ensure that people with the greatest chance of breaking a bone are treated. The tool was developed to help health care providers determine the chances of a patient breaking their hip or another major bone within a ten year period. Health care providers enter information about a patient’s hip BMD together with certain other risk factors for osteoporosis to determine absolute fracture risk.

Mindways QCT Pro™ software performs bone densitometry exams for both the lumbar spine and hip from a standard CT scan using low-dose scan protocols, comparable to the radiation exposure of a mammogram. While spine measurements are made in the trabecular bone only and offer exceptional sensitivity to BMD changes, QCT Pro™ also produces DXA-equivalent BMD measurement and T-scores at the hip that are interpreted the same way as DXA reports.

Unlike the patient positioning requirements of other technologies, the hips do not need to be rotated for a 3D QCT scan, enhancing comfort for patients with arthritic hips. QCT scans and bone density analysis are performed by a CT technologist who is guided through the simple workflow by the software to produce a BMD report within minutes. In addition, the QCT exam can make use of standard abdominal or pelvic CT exams with no further patient time or x-ray exposure.

Mindways VP of Business Development, Dr. Alan Brett said: “We are very pleased with the inclusion of QCT Pro™ into FRAX® which, reiterates its applicability as a mature technology that offers numerous benefits to facilities of all sizes. By allowing providers the opportunity to make use of CT scanners that are existing parts of the healthcare infrastructure, QCT with its low capital and maintenance costs can often provide bone densitometry services for less than the cost of operating a DXA machine. This allows smaller facilities and rural hospitals with low densitometry referrals to offer this important service to their communities. Larger and specialist imaging facilities also benefit from QCT by improving their CT equipment utilization with minimal burden on other CT procedures since a typical QCT scan takes less than 10 minutes of CT scanner time.”

In the USA, QCT exams are eligible for reimbursement by Medicare for routine BMD screening in post-menopausal women every 24 months in the same way as DXA studies. Inclusion into FRAX® coupled with dramatic reductions in Medicare reimbursement for DXA studies, during 2012 and 2013, is supporting a more widespread adoption of QCT for bone density testing services.

“QCT systems are much lower in cost than an entry-level DXA machine and can be used with any existing CT scanner. With no requirements for a dedicated DXA technician or the space to house a DXA machine, and no additional, ongoing hardware maintenance costs, QCT can deliver a clear economic advantage for facilities in addition to a high precision technology for measuring BMD in patients that may be at risk of osteoporotic fracture,” said Dr Brett.

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