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Physical exam frequency

How often you need a physical exam; Health maintenance visit; Health screening; Checkup

 

Information

All adults should visit their health care provider from time to time, even if they are healthy. The purpose of these visits is to:

  • Screen for diseases
  • Assess risk of future medical problems
  • Encourage a healthy lifestyle
  • Update vaccinations
  • Maintain a relationship with a provider in case of an illness

For recommendations for men and women by age group, see:

  • Health screening -- women -- age 18 to 39
  • Health screening -- women -- age 40 to 64
  • Health screening -- women -- over 65
  • Health screening -- men -- age 18 to 39
  • Health screening -- men -- age 40 to 64
  • Health screening -- men -- over 65

 

References

Atkins D, Barton M. The periodic health examination. In: Goldman L, Schafer AI, eds. Goldman's Cecil Medicine. 25th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier Saunders; 2016:chap 15.

 
  • Blood pressure check

    Blood pressure check - illustration

    To measure blood pressure, your doctor uses an instrument call a sphygmomanometer, which is more often referred to as a blood pressure cuff. The cuff is wrapped around your upper arm and inflated to stop the flow of blood in your artery. As the cuff is slowly deflated, your doctor uses a stethoscope to listen to the blood pumping through the artery. These pumping sounds register on a gauge attached to the cuff. The first pumping sound your doctor hears is recorded as the systolic pressure, and the last sound is the diastolic pressure.

    Blood pressure check

    illustration

  • Physical exam frequency

    Physical exam frequency - illustration

    Even if you feel fine, it still important to see your health care provider regularly to check for potential problems. Certain symptoms such as high blood sugar and high cholesterol levels often do not produce any symptoms until advanced disease has occurred.

    Physical exam frequency

    illustration

    • Blood pressure check

      Blood pressure check - illustration

      To measure blood pressure, your doctor uses an instrument call a sphygmomanometer, which is more often referred to as a blood pressure cuff. The cuff is wrapped around your upper arm and inflated to stop the flow of blood in your artery. As the cuff is slowly deflated, your doctor uses a stethoscope to listen to the blood pumping through the artery. These pumping sounds register on a gauge attached to the cuff. The first pumping sound your doctor hears is recorded as the systolic pressure, and the last sound is the diastolic pressure.

      Blood pressure check

      illustration

    • Physical exam frequency

      Physical exam frequency - illustration

      Even if you feel fine, it still important to see your health care provider regularly to check for potential problems. Certain symptoms such as high blood sugar and high cholesterol levels often do not produce any symptoms until advanced disease has occurred.

      Physical exam frequency

      illustration

    A Closer Look

     

      Talking to your MD

       

        Self Care

         

          Tests for Physical exam frequency

           

             

            Review Date: 4/11/2015

            Reviewed By: Linda J. Vorvick, MD, Medical Director and Director of Didactic Curriculum, MEDEX Northwest Division of Physician Assistant Studies, Department of Family Medicine, UW Medicine, School of Medicine, University of Washington, Seattle, WA. Internal review and update on 07/24/2016 by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Isla Ogilvie, PhD, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.

            The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed medical professional should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Links to other sites are provided for information only -- they do not constitute endorsements of those other sites. © 1997- A.D.A.M., Inc. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.
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