Regular health screening is an important part of self-care, prevention, and timely detection of major illnesses. Healthy, proactive vision of life is separated from hypochondria only by a very thin the limit. We do not have to exaggerate. However, as time goes by and we are approaching to the fourth to fifth decade of our life, it is increasingly necessary to conduct screening tests at least every three years, even if there are no complaints.
The manager screening starts with a basic medical examination. The first step is to record anamnestic data, which includes both family history and anamnesis for the individual. The importance of family history is to reveal the familial and hereditary nature of certain diseases. It contains general questions about your family members, if there was a sudden heart attack in the family, a stroke or heart attack at a young age. It records the accumulation of certain cardiovascular risk factors or events within the family. The medical examination also covers the occurrence of diabetes, hypertension and cancer in the family. Questions about the individual reveal the current bad habits, such as smoking, alcohol, or drinking a greater amount of coffee. These habits increase the occurrence of cardiovascular disease. We also map information about the physical activity of an individual. This is followed by questions related to previous illnesses. Before the screening test, you should prepare yourself to think about what your illnesses were before.
After the initial questions, are mapped the current complaints. Issues of cardiovascular disease are of great importance. It was once a chest pain, a dyspnoea complaint, how much you can withstand physical exercise? If you experience heart palpitations, dizziness complaints, headaches occur, where are they localized? Do you measure your blood pressure regularly, and what values are you registering? Is there a so-called claudication complaint, lower extremity "angina", caused by walking? These questions are followed by questions regarding general condition: weight gain or unjustified weight loss, loss of appetite, abdominal complaints, pain, bloating, swelling, must be mentioned in any case. Sudden alteration of bovel habits also provides an important basis for the investigator. It is a general question if you have black or bloody stool, or there is a problem with urination. In the latter case, the question is that it does not sting, it starts normally, how many times a night it raises the person, how much it disturbs the calm of the night? You may have to answer a question about your sleeping apnea, or snoring, or times when you may not be breathing during your night's sleep. Ultimately, there is a question if you have fever recently, or some allergy to a drug or food is known.
The anamnesis is followed by the most basic examination, the physical examination. This will consist of viewing, listening, touching and measuring pulse and blood pressure.
The next step is to prepare for a static EKG, which provides the examiner with an extremely large but not enough amount of information. We can observe the occurrence of possible rhythm disturbances, indications of some confusion and an image of an already had heart attack. The physician will see on the EKG signs of are already suspected coronary angioedema.
Following the EKG an echocardiography will be done, during which we can examine the structure and functioning of the heart. It is possible to clarify whether the patient has a valve illness, myocardial heart attack, some congenital malformations, a disturbance of the heart wall movement, or thickening of the wall caused by untreated hypertension.
Despite the many data, we do not get all the information after the static EKG, so we end up with an EKG with exercise test. During this procedure, the patient is using a bycicle and dosing the effort according to age and gender, we perform several EKG, and continuously measure the pulse and blood pressure. These tests reveal the so called ischaemia of coronary arteries. If there are alarming results, a more detailed invasive cardiological examination is performed.
The Carotis Doppler examination must be a part of heart and coronary disease screening. This investigation is none other than the examination of the brain, which is the mirror of the entire vascular system. It gives informations about the appearance and stages of atherosclerosis, but we also can find a major stenosis that may be associated with a stroke.
It is very important to carry out laboratory tests that should include blood count, electrolytes, liver and kidney function parameters, fasting blood glucose and lipid parameters. The latter are used to validate or exclude cardiovascular disease status, and diabetes. Diagnosis of diabetes may also be needed with HBA1C test, which gave information about the blood glucose level in the past 2 - 3 months prior to the study and, together with the fasting blood glucose, is the essential investigation to diagnose diabetes mellitus.
In men, the study of prostate specific antigen (PSA) is part of the laboratory test, which serves to filter the prostate carcinoma on time. With the 3 x haemoscreen tests, we detect the smallest amount of blood in the stool that allows early discovery of a tumor in the gastrointestinal tract, and if positive, a stomach or colonoscopy is justified.
Because these days the regular lung screening is not obligatory, so a chest X-ray is essential for a screening test, to exclude lung cancer, TBC or any chronic or acute inflammatory lung diseases.
Abdominal ultrasound is one of the most important tests during screening. It is a painless procedure, without radiation exposure. It can be repeated at any time and provides a lot of information. We perform it on an empty stomach where possible, and for pelvic examination with filled bladder. It is suitable for the kidney and gallstone, and abdominal tumor diagnosis, pelvic disorders on ladies, and prostate and bladder examination on males. For ladies the screening should be extended to gynecological areas, too. In case of high PSA values for men, urological examination is justified.
A general periodical screening should include these elements. If there is no discrepancy, it will bring comfort. Any abnormal finding indicates the necessity of further specialist examinations.