The purpose of medicine is to cure illness, and the best way to do that is to prevent it from happening. If illness is inevitable, discovering it at an early stage enhances the chances of successful treatment. A late discovery of illness in most cases signifies the beginning of suffering and pain, as well as fear of prolonged and uncertain recovery. In order to prevent illness and to make an early diagnosis, medical practices often involve physical health check-ups for the purpose of prevention.
What is a Full Physical Health Check-Up?
A full physical health check-up is a comprehensive, detailed examination of the body and most organs, “from head to toe.“ Sunce Polyclinic offers you standard health check-ups consisting of the following features:
- Clinical internist’s check-up
- RTG for heart and lungs (upon indication)
- Breast check-up (ultrasound for women under the age of 40, mammography for women aged 40 and over)
- Abdominal ultrasound
- Gynecological check-up, HPV test and gynecological ultrasound
- Prostate ultrasound and PSA (for men over the age of 40)
- Laboratory screenings (complete blood count, glucose, creatinine, bilirubin, urate, CRP, overall cholesterol, HDL cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, triglycerides, AST, ALT, GGT, ALP, potassium, sodium, calcium, urine test strip)
If during the check-up the need for additional control emerges due to a present illness, or a new illness is detected, you will be offered an addition to the standard package, and undergo further tests and diagnostic procedures. For example, if the check-up identifies high glucose concentration in the blood, HbA1c must be determined; or if it finds an enlargement of the thyroid gland, the concentration of hormones produced by the thyroid gland need to be determined, and a thyroid ultrasound is to be performed in that case.
What is the Purpose of a Physical Health Check-Up?
As we said before: the purpose of a physical health check-up is to discover a disease at an early stage, and provide timely treatment. Nowadays, given its frequency and mortality, blood system diseases are at the top of the list. They are followed by malignant diseases, and then respiratory diseases, rheumatic, and other diseases.
Unhealthy lifestyle, unhealthy diet, stress, smoking, and insufficient physical activity are considered risk factors for the incurrence of these diseases. The rising number of cases of high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity and elevated fat in the blood, give way to damaged blood vessels, myocardial infarction, heart failure, and stroke. These risk factors, otherwise latently present for months and years at a time, are often found during health check-ups.
Successful treatment and prognosis of malignant diseases (prostate cancer in men, breast and ovarian cancer in women, colon cancer, stomach cancer, and lung cancer) depends greatly on the timely discovery of the disease. However, diseases tend to sneak in, without displaying serious symptoms, if any at all. Besides hereditary risk factors, malignant diseases are also caused by lifestyle, diet, physical activity or lack of the same, smoking, and chronic illness. Regular health check-ups make it possible to discover some malignant changes in a timely manner by means of screening (e.g. determining the PSA concentration in all men aged over 40, breast check-ups and ultrasounds for all women, verifying blood in the stool in all persons aged over 50), or targeted diagnostics for all family members suffering from cancer.
Physical health check-ups are recommended once a year or once every two years, depending on your age, overall health, or the presence of risk factors. Old age, chronic illness, positive family anamnesis and the presence of other risk factors justify the need for more frequent health check-ups.