Free Scans

Interested in volunteering to receive a free DXA scan at the UCSD School of Bone Densitometry?

As part of our DXA technician training program, we give real, hands-on experience of scanning actual volunteer patients from the local San Diego community.

As a volunteer you will receive gold standard information regarding your body composition and bone health.  This can help to guide weight change plans (losing fat and/or gaining muscle) better than the scale alone, as DXA is the gold standard for assessing accurate body composition.  You will also receive a written report of your results detailing bone health and fracture risk similar to what you would receive going to your physician for osteoporosis screening.

What you’ll get:

Within one week of your scan you’ll receive a complete report with your scan results. 

Participation is on the weekend (Friday afternoon, Saturday afternoon, Sunday morning) of our scheduled DXA Schools at the EPARC lab in the Qualcomm Institute on the UCSD Campus in La Jolla. Appointments are about 60-90 minutes and are scheduled 3-4 weeks in advance. There is a very minimal amount of radiation from these scans, as such, a signed referral from your physician is required. This form can be returned to us via fax at (858) 534-9404 or email at .

Click Here for our “MD Clearance” Referral Form 


Are you eligible for a volunteer scan?

You must be willing and able to complete all four scans: whole body, single hip, lumbar spine, and forearm.

You CANNOT be scanned for the following reasons:

  1.  You weigh more than 350 pounds
  2.  You cannot lie still for 6-8 minutes (eg. No tremors)
  3.  You have had partial or full hip replacement in BOTH hips (hip replacement in one hip is okay)
  4.  You have had medical imaging requiring dye in the 2 weeks prior to your scan appointment

Interested individuals can call 858-822-7624 or email for more information. We will contact you when appointments become available.

Interested in volunteering for research studies at EPARC?

The Exercise and Physical Activity Resource Center (EPARC) at UC San Diego is at the cutting edge of health science technology, and home to our School of Bone Densitometry.  However, we don’t only do research on bone health; we conduct LOTS of research into health, exercise capacity, exercise efficiency, and technology in health.   If you are interested in seeing what other studies are being conducted, and/or volunteering for research studies at EPARC, visit, call (858) 534-9315, or email for more information.

Upcoming Scanning Weekend Dates

January 31-February 2, 2020
March 13-15, 2020
April 24-26, 2020
June 19-21, 2020
August 14-16, 2020
September 25-27, 2020
November 13-15, 2020
December 11-13, 2020
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