If you’re like a large segment of the population, you may have never experienced what would be considered a comprehensive medical exam. Far too often, yearly health exams and physicals involve the bare minimum and little more from doctors who are overworked and have little time to interact with patients they may only see one time a year – at best.
A comprehensive physical examination is far more involved than the basics you’ve likely experienced in the past. You should expect to spend a fair amount of time in the office for your medical screening and be prepared for the doctor to ask quite a few questions during the process.
In fact, a thorough health assessment lasts about five hours and will include various physical examinations, diagnostic testing, laboratory testing, and more so that when you leave you will have a full picture of your current health situation. More importantly, you will go through the laboratory testing process ahead of your actual consultation with your physician so that he or she has all the facts in hand during your full body medical exam and consultation.
The consultation with your physician is the most important part of your day. While the visit may seem like a lot of time to invest in a yearly health examination, the truth is that five hours is nothing compared to the number of hours staying on top of your medical and healthcare needs can add to your life. It really is a small price to pay.
The medical examination is a full, head-to-toe evaluation of your health unlike anything you’ve likely experienced in the past. But there are things you must do in order to get more out of your health assessment, like the following:
- Bring a list of questions you have about specific health concerns to the appointment with you.
- Provide an accurate medical history.
- Refrain from eating or drinking for at least four hours prior to your appointment.
- Bring comfortable clothing for the physical fitness assessment and toiletries for afterward.
Little things like these can make a world of difference for your overall frame of mind and personal comfort during the examination and can ensure an accurate picture of your health while addressing specific health concerns you may have.
Expect to spend your five-hour appointment travelling from testing station to testing station as the day progresses. Among the assessments you will experience are evaluations of your:
- Cardiovascular Health
- Hearing and Vision
You will also undergo gender specific evaluations and assessments along with a consultation with a registered dietician.
The end of your experience for the day will be your consultation with your physician. This will occur after all your tests have been completed and the results have been received. During this consultation, you will have time set aside to answer any questions you may have about your health and the suggestions for changes in lifestyle, habits, and diet your doctor may suggest. Your comprehensive medical exam is your first line of defense against poor health. Use it wisely.