I had my 6-month followup Dexa scan yesterday and overall the results were good. My total body fat is still low at 17.3 but that is up from 16.7. I exercise alot, swimming and walking so I'm not surprised that it is low. My doctor wants it at 25%, which he says is healthier for my age (over 50), but I doubt that it will get there when I am exercising this much. I have added more fats (nuts, full fat cheese) into my diet and my skin seems better than when I was eating more low fat.
What is really worrying is that my bone density has dropped by 2.3% over the 6-month period. My bone density is in the high category, which is great and I do regular weight bearing exercise, but I have a family history of osteoporosis and having a drop like that worries me. I take my 3 doses of 500mg of calcium every day several hours after my iron but it may be that my body is not absorbing it like it should. That is a problem.
What do you do to help prevent losing bone density and help your body use the calcium supplements better. I want to be proactive and not wait until I have a real problem.
My bone density showed up as below average for my age on my first DEXA, so my surgeon's office recommended I increase my calcium citrate intake to 2000 mg a day (four doses of 500 mg).
However, the new PCP I started with this past January (who happens to be very interested in bones) told me I was actually in the osteoporosis category (neither the DEXA scan tech or the surgeon's office told me this - they just said it was "below average"), so she sent me for a Reclast infusion (she wanted to avoid Fosamax or other oral drugs because of my WLS - they can be hard on the stomach).
I've only done one DEXA scan, so for all I know, I could have had osteoporosis before WLS since I'd never had a baseline scan - and I haven't done one since, so I don't know if it's improved or gotten worse (hopefully improved since the Reclast)
Weight-bearing exercise and extra calcium is pretty much the standard treatment before you start getting into drug treatment..
osteoporosis runs in my family, too, which is another reason I wanted to do the scan. My insurance doesn't cover DEXA scans if you're under 60, but I wanted to know about my bone density...and I also wanted to know my fat percentage, which the scans that the doctors order don't include.
This definitely is not peer-reviewed, so you can take it or leave it, but he suggests calcium citrate as a very well-absorbed form of calcium (he's talking about seniors - not WLS patients - but then, most osteoporosis patients are seniors!)
Laura in Texas
51 years old; 5'7" tall; HW: 339 (BMI=53); CW: 140 (BMI=22)
RNY: 09-17-08 Dr. Garth Davis
brachioplasty: 12-18-09 Dr. Wainwright; lbl/bl: 06-28-11 Dr. LoMonaco
"If what you're doing doesn't work, change what you're doing - don't complain that it doesn't work."
I was similar to you, density high but trending downward on my Dexascan. I know the patches are controversial but the calcium patch has definitely worked for me. The last two Dexascans my T-score went up.
I have been on calcium patch since July 2016. I wear them at night on my chest. Don't know if that helps with absorption.