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New mobile bone mineral density scanner is launched by GE Healthcare

GE Healthcare : 28 November, 2007  (New Product)
GE Healthcare has launched the company’s new mobile system for bone mineral density (BMD) and body composition testing, to help expand the reach of healthcare to more patients while making diagnostic tools more accessible to physicians and clinicians.
The system is GE’s first offering of the company’s ‘fan-beam’ X-ray bone densitometer technology in a mobile van using Dual-Energy X-ray Absorbtiometry, or DEXA scanning, to measure and calculate bone, fat and muscle mass.

DEXA scans are considered the ‘gold standard’ for physicians to detect and diagnose skeletal diseases, including osteoporosis, as well as to perform vertebral imaging. The National Osteoporosis Foundation reports this disease impacts half of women over the age of 50 in the USA.

GE’s DEXA systems also enable licensed medical practitioners to simultaneously assess body composition and ascertain fat distribution in adults.

GE is featuring the new Mobile Prodigy and other Lunar technologies this week at the 93rd annual meeting of the Radiological Society of North America in Chicago, USA. The Mobile Prodigy contains the same features as the Lunar Prodigy to detect low bone mass and increased risk of fracture, with direct digital technology, precision and accuracy.

“Rather than the patient driving further for BMD and body composition testing, we can bring these advanced health care technologies closer to the patient’s home,” said Laura Stoltenberg, general manager of GE Healthcare’s Lunar business. “This mobile DEXA system can deliver the benefits of BMD patient care to smaller, rural hospitals and clinics that don't have a dedicated system.”

GE Lunar is also demonstrating technology to help physicians measure BMD in children, as well as systems to enable licensed medical practitioners to simultaneously assess body composition and ascertain fat distribution in adults.
Paediatric bone mineral density assessment can be challenging for physicians to monitor over time, because the skeleton of a child is growing simultaneously during the timeframe of monitoring. GE Lunar features enhanced enCORE software for its DEXA systems that allows physicians to measure a child’s bone density, fat and lean tissue mass composition, by factoring in and trending the child’s age, height and other variables. This enables the physician to separate out the child’s growth from other changes to the size and density of the skeleton.

GE Lunar’s iDXA and Prodigy DEXA systems measure and calculate bone, fat and muscle mass for body composition analysis. Separate from BMD assessment, a new Body Composition Software system can help people and their physicians establish goals for weight loss, exercise and diet regimes. DEXA body composition is a useful alternative to hydrostatic weighing and skin fold measurements.

The Lunar systems work by measuring the regional and whole body BMD, plus lean and fat tissue mass. The systems calculate derivative values that can be displayed in user-defined statistical formats and trends with colour image mapping, and compared to reference populations at the sole discretion of the health care professional.

These body composition values are useful to licensed medical practitioners in their management of diseases and conditions where the disease and condition itself, or its treatment, can affect the relative amounts of patient fat and lean tissue.

The GE Lunar Body Composition Software option does not diagnose disease, or recommend treatment regimens, or quantify treatment effectiveness. Only the licensed medical practitioner can make these judgments. Some of the diseases/conditions for which body composition values are useful include chronic renal failure, anorexia nervosa, obesity, AIDS/HIV and cystic fibrosis.

Lunar iDXA software also gives physicians dedicated reporting for body composition measurements and high percentage colour fat mapping. Patients can easily follow the report divided into three compartments: lean mass, total body tissue percent fat, and bone density.
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