Medical check-ups are very important as they help to detect conditions that have yet to produce symptoms and, in some cases, can even prevent the onset of an illness.
There are different types of medical check-ups. How often they should be carried out and the specific tests necessary depend on age, gender, family medical history and risk factors for certain diseases.
Appointment with specialist. The doctor will endeavour to compile all the medical history possible of the patient and carry out a physical examination, also checking blood pressure and noting height and weight. A person’s blood pressure should be checked fairly frequently as high blood pressure (hypertension) is a major risk factor for heart disease risk and, furthermore, it often goes unnoticed. People with chronic medical conditions, such as diabetes, different types of heart or kidney disease must be particularly vigilant about having their blood pressure tested regularly.
In addition, in the case of suspecting any alteration, your doctor will probably suggest the following tests be carried out:
- Blood test. Blood tests are very useful for helping to diagnose different types of diseases. They can detect infections, alterations related to diabetes and also anaemia. Normally the tests include a haematology test (analysing blood count measures) and a biochemistry test (analysing levels of glucose, uric acid, alanine transaminase or bilirubin, amongst others)
- Urine test. A urine test also helps to detect infections, kidney disease and other conditions of the urinary system.
Glaucoma is the second cause of blindness in the world. From the age of 40 onwards, the risk of suffering from this condition increases. As there are very often no symptoms until the advanced stages, if it is not detected on time, it can often lead to a loss of vision.
For this reason, from the age of 40 onwards, an eye test is recommended at the very least once every five years. Normally, during this type of check-up tests are carried out to verify the visual acuity (the clarity of sharpness of vision), visual field, eye pressure and to check whether there has been any nerve damage, amongst others.
A hearing test allows the evaluation of the sensitivity of a person’s hearing. Experts recommend having an annual hearing test, especially for people over 50.
After the specialist has compiled as much information as possible on a patient, the following tests are carried out:
- Otoscopy. To check for the presence of excessive wax, internal inflammation, discharge or perforation.
- Pure tone audiometry. To determine the hearing threshold levels of a patient using both air and bone conduction testing to also verify the inner ear hearing capacity.
- Speech audiometry. To evaluate the capacity to distinguish different sounds and identify words.
Any slight sign of hearing loss detected on time can help avoid, or at least delay, some of the aspects of hearing impairment.