In the last century, was marked by countless medical advances, but the most remarkable changes have taken place in the thinking of patients, who have become more proactive about their health status and more interested in maintaining wellness and preventing disease.
However, a number of problems are not easy to detect in the early stages.
We present a series of tests and examinations necessary for the prevention and detection of major diseases:
Body Mass Index (BMI)
Experts remind of the importance of maintaining a constant optimal weights. BMI provides an important indicator in determining how the weight can damage health.
A body mass index classified in category 18.5 – 24.9 means a lower risk of developing weight-related diseases.
People who fall into the range of 25 – 29.9 is considered overweight, while those with a BMI over 30, obese.
An index above 25 is a warning sign for health problems, in which the weight is one of the factors.
BMI calculator intended for persons aged 18 – 65 years (except those with highly developed muscles, pregnant women or nursing). For people over 65, the optimum level is higher, so a BMI around 25 should not be considered cause for concern.
To find BMI, you can use body mass index calculator
Deposit fat around the waist – where vital organs are located – favors an increased risk of hypertension, high levels of cholesterol level in blood, type 2 diabetes, heart disease and stroke.
Optimum value for waist circumference varies depending on ethnicity and sex:
European men / Caucasian South Africans, East – Mediterranean and the Middle East should not exceed 102 inches;
Asians, Indians and people from Central America should have a circumference smaller, up to 90 inches;
For women, the maximum is within the range 88 (European Caucasians, South African, East – Mediterranean, Middle East) and 85 (Asians, Indians and people of Central America)
As with BMI, these values refer to the population of the age group 18 to 65, except for pregnant or nursing women.
Risk of cardiovascular disease
Heart health issues are increasingly discussed in recent years, but is little known fact that 80% of the population have at least one risk factor for heart disease and stroke.
Although some factors can not be controlled – gender, age, ethnicity, medical history – risk factors such as diet, physical activity, smoking or stress related to personal choices of the individual.
Hypertension is the main risk factor in cardiovascular disease, but proper treatment can reduce the risk of stroke by 40 percent and the risk of stroke by 25%.
How often is recommended cardiology consultation?
After the age of 20 years should see the cardiologist every two years, or annually, given that hypertension is already present.
Normal voltage must fall at around 120/80 mm Hg, value greater than 140/90 is considered high (130/80 in people with diabetes).
Any values between intervals above must be kept under observation.
Another risk factor for health is to increase blood cholesterol levels. High levels of LDL (low density lipoproteins – low density protein) in the blood – known as “bad cholesterol” – can cause deposition of fat on artery walls, favoring arterial wall thickening and atherosclerosis, a condition underlying most cardiovascular disease.
When recommending cholesterol testing?
Regular cholesterol testing is recommended after age 40 years for men and 50 years for women.
People who suffer from heart disease, diabetes and hypertension who suffered a stroke that family history of cardiovascular disease or who have known risk factors, you should regularly test their cholesterol, regardless of age.
Optimal outcome for analysis LDL cholesterol should be below 100 milligrams per deciliter of blood, and results between 100 and 129 mg / dl are considered normal.
Values above 160 mg / dl are considered high and requires medication.
Bone mineral density
According to medical records, 1 in 4 women and 1 in 8 men over the age of 50 years suffer from osteoporosis.
Early identification of the disease and the appropriate measures are essential in treating osteoporosis and preventing weakening and fracturing bones.
When the screening is recommended?
For the correct assessment of major risk factors (medical condition, family history, previous fractures, etc.), osteoporosis screening tests are recommended for women since men and post-menopausal women after age 50 years.
Tested for bone mineral density is justified in people over age 65 who have been identified with increased risk of developing the disease.
Blood sugar concentration
There are cases in which patients have type 2 diabetes without being aware of it. In the presence of appropriate treatment can be successfully avoided complications such as heart disease, kidney disease, eye damage, nerve damage or impotence.
There are a variety of tests that can identify the presence of diabetes or pre-diabetes:
- Glycated hemoglobin (glycosylated);
- Oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT);
- Morning plasma glucose test (on an empty stomach);
- Testing Glucose in any time of day;
After overcoming age 40 years, diabetes screening tests are recommended at least every 3 years. If there is a patient family with type 2 diabetes, testing is recommended at a younger age and increased frequency.
Testing for cancer at home
Although hard to believe, signs and symptoms of certain types of cancer can be detected at home without the presence of a health professional:
Testicular self-examination can help in identifying prominent or changes that require medical attention, inflammation and changes occurring are not always a sign of cancer, but medical advice is required to remove the suspicion.
For example, when a node (inflammation) to determine the causes, the doctor may recommend an examination of tissue (biopsy), which may exclude the suspicion of cancer, if it proves to be Bening.
Because the incidence of testicular cancer is very low, most men do not give sufficient importance testicular examination.
In what situations to your doctor?
- When a node has a prominent or inflammation;
- If this pain or discomfort in the testicles or scrotum;
- Changes in the volume and shape of the testicles;
- Feeling of heaviness in the scrotum;
- Evidence of sharp pain in lower abdomen;
Depending on the circumstances, your doctor will perform a testicular exam, and will recommend blood tests, ultrasound or biopsy.
Breast self-examination should not be considered a diagnostic test, it is important to identify lumps or changes in the structure. The best time of self-examination is 5-10 days after onset of menstruation.
Doctors recommend constant monitoring moles and inflammation.
Examination of colorectal
For people older than 50 years, we recommend testing to detect occult blood in the stool, blood in stool appearance can be detected by the patient at home. If they identify the presence of blood in the stool, medical advice should be followed by a colonoscopy.
In men, prostate cancer screening is based on digital rectal examination, which allows analyzing and detecting prostate tumors.
After analyzing PSA, prostate-specific antigen to identify the blood. These analyzes are recommended beginning at age 40 years for men with a family history of prostate cancer after the age of 50 years for those at risk environment.
For women, it is recommended Pap testing and mammography. Pap test be performed, depending on age and medical history every 1-3 years after starting sexual life. For breast cancer, we recommend performing a clinical examination every two years after age exceeding 40 years. Unless there is a family history of disease, mamogramele is done every 2 years after the age of 50 years.
Tests for known risks
If there is a family history for a specific disease or defect that increases the risk for certain diseases, specific tests are recommended:
- Cancer, heart disease, autoimmune diseases and other conditions present in the family – we recommend testing at a young age to determine the risk of disease.
- Sexually transmitted diseases (if unprotected intercourse): HIV, chlamydia, gonorrhea.
- Smokers should keep an eye on the risk of diseases such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, lung cancer, and aortic aneurysm.