The word “prevention” is derived from the Latin verb “praevenire” meaning “to anticipate”.
In healthcare, the term prevention refers to all steps taken to prevent, delay or mitigate damage to someone's health. A distinction is drawn between different types of prevention: Primary prevention includes generally useful measures such as health education, hygiene and vaccinations. The goal of secondary prevention is to identify diseases in risk groups at an early stage, and it includes such measures as prevention of cardiovascular disease and mammography and colonoscopy screening. The aim of tertiary prevention is to prevent deteriorations or relapses in existing illnesses. Tertiary prevention measures are used after a heart attack or a fall, for example.
Everyone makes good resolutions. Many preventative measures are things you can do yourself such as getting more exercise, eating less or eating more healthily and stopping smoking. Do you have PRIMEO insurance? If you do, you will have access to a range of specialised check-up centres which will examine these matters and others with you. Just give us a call. We will advise you and put you in touch with the right people.
In general, medical check-ups are useful for diseases which have few symptoms at first, can be treated and are more effectively treatable when caught early. A healthy balance should be maintained between improvements in quality or length of life and screening costs. Only a few diseases meet these conditions. Cardiovascular disease can be prevented or delayed if risk factors such as high blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol, obesity and smoking are identified at an early stage and treated or reduced.
Check-ups are also important for certain types of cancer such as skin, breast, uterus and colon cancer to enable early treatment. In the case of diseases for which there are vaccines, such as tetanus, flu, measles, mumps, rubella and hepatitis, vaccination is recommended. Check-ups may also detect osteoporosis, hypothyroidism in post-menopausal women and alcohol, drug and medication abuse.
The doctor will decide which check-ups to recommend on this basis. The check-up will consist of a detailed conversation aimed at identifying risk factors and a targeted physical examination. Depending on the findings, the doctor may then prescribe further examinations. Finally, he or she will advise the patient on the steps needed to maintain health.