Are all DEXA scans created equal?


I apologize if this is in the wrong section. I wasn’t sure where else to put it.

I’ve had the total of one DEXA scan done and was curious if all of them are the same. The reason why I’m asking is because I’m a tall guy (6’4"+). So when I looked at my scan, my feet got cut off.

I was told that it would be difficult to get my arms in the scan since I have large delts. They even tried to put a strap around me to keep my arms tightly at my slides. When the scan of my muscles was taken, I saw both my arms where cut in half, but the ‘fat’ scan did have my complete arms captured.

Do DEXA scan beds have different dimensions or are they one-size-fits…most?

(Chris) #2

Dexa scans, machines, technicians are all variables out of your control. Unfortunately there is no perfectly accurate bodyfat measure.

(charlie3) #3

I got a smart scale off amazon (renpho) and step on it every morning. A phone app picks up the data. I trust the body weight reading to be dead on accurate day to day but only look at trends for the other values. After 18 months of readings my conclusion is it useful and accurate so long as you stick to looking at trends over months, not day to day. I start to trust a trend when i can see it in the mirror. It’s helped me a lot. One of the surprise trends is increaing bone mass, from may be 6.2 to 7 lbs. over 18 months. May be more important than the aproximately 14 pounds of muscle added in the same time frame. Also, added about 6 lbs of body fat. Body fat wants to rise and fall with muscle gains, frustrating.


Congrats on those great gains!
I use a Fitbit Aria scale that does roughly the same thing. Sends a current through your feet and around your legs and estimates your body fat based on the resistance, your height , sex, and age.
DEXA is suppose to be the gold standard for calculating body fat. But only if it scans your entire body :slight_smile: I had a 5 point difference between my Aria scans and the DEXA scan which is quite the variance.

(charlie3) #5

I’m sure i’m learning more from the free readings available every day than a rare occaisional reading that costs money. The absolute values at one point in time are not as valuable to me as trends over time.