If an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, then the value of an annual wellness exam is priceless. Adults who fail to make time for this important appointment each year could be missing out on some important benefits. This routine check-up is not only an opportunity to maintain a relationship with your physician, but also to monitor your baseline health. It can also serve to identify any potential health problems and begin treatment as early as possible. Generally, problems can more easily be treated in their early stages before having the opportunity to progress to a more serious condition with greater adverse health effects.
In our office, we break patient wellness visits into three main parts – health history review, the exam, and a discussion of the topics most relevant to your health and risk factors. Each visit is personalized per the needs of the patient with an emphasis on preventive care.
The health history review provides Dr. Hammad with an understanding of the types of health issues you and your closest relatives members may have experience in the past, as well as the types of lifestyle factors that may be influencing your health. Dr. Hammad will review any potentially hereditary conditions in your family, record any medications you may be taking, and note any symptoms you may currently be experiencing. You may also be asked about immunizations and whether you are up to date on your vaccines.
Dr. Hammad will examine your general appearance and mental acuity for any signs of underlying health problems. He may request lab work to review your blood counts, cholesterol levels, and more.
All physical exams include a basic check of vital signs, including blood pressure, temperature, heart rate, and respiratory rate. The results of these basic readings can raise red flags in patients who may be suffering with hypertension, cardiovascular problems, lung problems, infections, and other underlying conditions. Dr. Hammad will also listen to your chest with a stethoscope to identify sounds of crackling, wheezing, heart murmur, or irregular heartbeat.
Dr. Hammad will also perform additional exams, including:
A thorough annual exam will also include gender-specific exams. For women, that means undergoing a breast and pelvic exam, as well as a Pap smear to screen for cervical cancer. For men, it could mean a hernia exam, as well as a testicular, penis, and prostate exam.
Dr. Hammad will discuss the preliminary results of your exam during your visit. He will also talk about any concerns he may have about your health and lifestyle, and he may order additional tests or screenings if necessary. If your gender, health history, age, or lifestyle present any risk factors for disease, you may talk about ways of preventing health complications in the future, as well as any preventive exams you may need, such as a mammogram or colonoscopy.