The Bone Health Program at Barnes-Jewish Hospital and Washington University School of Medicine is a national referral center for the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of metabolic bone diseases, particularly osteoporosis and Paget's disease, with emphasis on patient care, research and teaching.
Known as one of the best programs in the United States for the diagnosis and treatment of bone and mineral disease, the Bone Health Program is an international, outpatient referral center. World-renowned specialists in bone disorders use leading-edge technology to give accurate diagnoses and prescribe specific therapy based on each patient's symptoms, bone mineral density, risk factors and test results.
As medical consultants, the Bone Health Program specialists coordinate each patient's care with his or her personal physician, who is personally informed after each visit of the results of diagnostic tests and of the specialist's recommendations for therapy. The Bone Health Program accepts self-referrals.
Physicians and specialists have received intensive training in specific areas of bone health including the diagnosis and treatment of:
- Osteoporosis and its complications
- Paget's disease of bone
- Metabolic bone diseases
- Growth disturbances
- Treatment of pediatric bone disorders
Patients are seen in the new Center for Advanced Medicine at Barnes-Jewish Hospital and Washington University School of Medicine, and at a second office conveniently located in West St. Louis County.
Center for Advanced Medicine
4921 Parkview Place, Suite C, 5th floor
St. Louis, Missouri 63110
Instrumental in the development of the technique to measure bone mass, the Bone Health Program's medical specialists use a totally non-invasive painless procedure. This procedure provides for definitive measurements of bone density of the spine, hip, or wrist to ensure thoughtful and accurate diagnosis and certain response to therapy.
- dual energy X-ray absorptiometry (DEXA) (click here to see added info) - during DEXA, the patient lies on a padded table while a mechanical arm passes back and forth over the area being measured without touching the patient. No injections or dyes are used. The DEXA, which is a simple and fast procedure involving no discomfort, can measure bone mass in the spine, hip and wrist. Within 5-7 minutes, the X-ray beam records the amount of calcium in the bone. A computer attached to the machine calculates the amount of bone mineral and compares it to values considered normal in people of the same age and sex as the patient. The amount of radiation received is minimal since it delivers only one-sixth that of a chest X-ray or the same amount a person might get from the altitude while flying from New York to Los Angeles. Although the amount of radiation exposure is minimal, DEXA of the hip and spine is not performed on pregnant women
Administered by highly trained DEXA technicians and interpreted by Washington University specialists, these tests are supported by Medicare and most insurance companies.
- blood and urine tests for the diagnosis and treatment of calcium and phosphate disorders
With this careful analysis, the medical specialist recommends appropriate preventive or therapeutic action. Treatment may include a diet rich in calcium and vitamin D, a regular program of weight-bearing exercise, and medical treatment.