Your health protection should be your primary duty because health is the real wealth of every human being. However, one common mistake that every one of us makes with the perception that until and unless we notice any trouble or symptoms we do not feel the urge to reach the nearest diagnostic center for accessing the underlying health issue.
This is absolutely wrong as taking some screening tests proactively can protect us from the danger of major health issues which can even include life-threatening conditions by diagnosing it in preliminary stages. Hence we can save our life from major health complications by getting early-stage accurate treatment. There are popular ten tests that you should take biennially in order to avoid major health complication risks.
These tests are essential for all younger as well as older adults including both the genders especially after 30 as by this stage of life the natural immune power of the body starts to deteriorate with every coming year. These proactive screening tests can protect women from many health issues that are very common in women. Similarly, these tests can protect older adults from many aging-related problems by detecting them in their initial phases.
Getting these screening tests on a fixed interval can ensure your whole families well being. Also when you will have a track of your complete physical health in hand, you can lead your life more confidently ensuring success in all respect.
Ten Tests That You Should Take Biennially
The American College of Physicians (ACP) advised biennial instead of annual testing of your stool in order to detect the early stage sign of colorectal cancer, especially to average-risk individuals, in the Annals of Internal Medicine published on November 5, 2019.
The ACP recommends this test to people with an average risk of this cancer even if they do not have any family history for the same. The screening should be started between the ages of 50 to 75 as this is the high time when these cancer cells may start growing in people with average risk.
The following four tests options are advised for the detection of colorectal cancer-
- Biennial fecal immunochemical test (FIT)
- Biennial high-sensitivity guaiac-based fecal occult blood test (gFOBT)
- Flexible sigmoidoscopy at every 10 years with the FIT
- Colonoscopy at every 10 years
As these clinical trials are based on biennially report so it is quite convenient for its patient to follow this screening interval. The stool test for the screening of colorectal cancer helps in reducing the death rates caused by this cancer along with increasing the life expectancy in patients who diagnosed positive reports.
Just like diabetes, even the number of thyroid patients is increasing rapidly year by year due to an unhealthy lifestyle routine followed by people of different age groups. So it is important to get thyroid tests biennially to stay aware of its current status and to take necessary medical help under the cases where you get a positive result.
The thyroid function test helps in the screening of thyroid disorders and also in the calibration of thyroid replacement medications doses. The thyroid test techniques which are commonly used includes-
- Thyroid Stimulating Hormone (TSH)
- Free Thyroxine (“free T4” or FT4)
Apart from these common thyroids detection tests, in more complicated cases of thyroid, some other thyroid tests are required to be done.
The thyroid health issue is more common in older adults especially women. Its common symptoms include chronic fatigue and cognitive disorders. If anyone notices these symptoms persistently then they should immediately have the TSH test in order to detect whether the thyroid is functioning well or there is a problem.
The TSH test determines whether your body has a sufficient level of thyroid hormone or not. The TSH level comes higher than its normal level when the thyroid gland doesn’t make enough amount of thyroid hormone. In the cases of abnormal TSH report, a Free T4 test is used in order to detect the thyroid hormone problem.
Apart from older adults, even young age women can also develop this hormonal disorder health issue. So in order to prevent its major impact on your overall health, it is important to have this screenings test biennially proactively.
Blood Pressure Detection Test
The American Heart Association or AHA recommends checking your blood pressure level biennially i.e. once in every two years interval after the age of 20 for both the genders. As per the AHA if your blood pressure is 120/80 millimeters of mercury (mm Hg) or below then you are absolutely fit with respect to BP level as this is the ideal limit of BP (including high and low level)
The older adults, like people aging 40 and above, obese people and African-Americans contain a greater risk of hypertension. So these people should proactively check their BP level at least once in a year as per the United States Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF). As a high BP level increases your risk of cardiovascular diseases which are life-threatening conditions so, to avoid this health complication start checking your BP level once you enter into your 20s.
Cholesterol Evaluation Test
The cholesterol evaluation test should be taken biennially as it helps in assessing your risk for developing different heart diseases or stoke which is a life-threatening condition. The buildup of cholesterol in your arteries affects your heart pumping rate and its efficiency and in the long run, it can develop blockages that may obstruct the blood supply into your heart and brain leading to heart attack and stroke happens.
The National Institutes of Health suggest that people aging 20 and above should have their cholesterol measured at least once in every 5 years interval. The ideal total cholesterol level is less than 200 milligrams per deciliter. Whereas the borderline high cholesterol reading is between 200 to 230 mg/dl.
People who are evaluated with a high cholesterol level should consult with their healthcare provider. Also, they should have this cholesterol checking blood test more often than others in order to reduce their risk of sudden heart attack and stroke.
Glycated Hemoglobin Test
Glycated hemoglobin or Hemoglobin A1C develops in your body when the blood glucose attaches to the hemoglobin in the red blood cells. Though this is a normal function but the problem appears when the level of glucose in your blood remains greater than its normal level resulting in the glycated hemoglobin percentage comes higher than its normal range.
This means people who have higher average blood sugar or glucose level, greater the percentage of glycated hemoglobin will be in its screening test. If the result shows 6.5% or more than that then it indicates a diabetes health issue. People who contain the risk of high blood glucose levels should proactively have this test in order to avoid their risk of diabetes.
This test is mostly used for-
- In order to check the blood sugar control in people with a diabetes health condition.
- In the cases where the fingerstick method is used for detection of the blood glucose level, it shows two reports- one your blood glucose level at a specific moment and hemoglobin A1C shows how was your average high blood sugar level over the past three months.
- This test is also used for detecting possible diabetes or pre-diabetes conditions.
The older adult should consult with their doctor regarding at what interval this test is necessary for them compared to younger adults.
Brain Natriuretic Peptide Test
The Brain Natriuretic Peptide Test or BNP test though its name resembles some brain function evaluation test but actually it helps in evaluating your heart function. The cases where a person’s heart is not pumping blood effectively the BNP level comes high and this issue is known as heart failure. This test is must be done biennially in order to evaluate your heart functioning status.
This test is mostly used for-
- The BNP test is primarily used for detecting new or worsening heart failure. This issue is very common in older adults that get worsen occasionally.
- People who are noticing shortness of breath for a substantial period of time must go for this screening test. However, shortness of breath can happen for many reasons other than heart failure such as pulmonary edema, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, pneumonia, angina, etc.
- The low level of BNP indicates that at that specific moment the shortness of breath is unlikely due to heart failure.
The BNP test over a fixed interval helps in detecting the heart failure and treatment progression rate.
Prothrombin time (PT) and International Normalized Ratio (INR)
These two blood tests are very crucial for people who are on blood thinner warfarin medication in order to evaluate their blood clotting speed. These tests measure how quickly your blood clots. Apart from the patients who are prescribed with blood-thinner warfarin, these two blood tests are also used during the diagnosis process of other medical health conditions as well.
This test is essential for every individual after the age of 40 in order to prevent their stroke risk, especially those who are taking blood-thinning medications. Also, people who are already diagnosed with blood clots in different areas of the body such as legs, lungs, etc should also have this test on a fixed interval as guided by their healthcare specialist.
This test is mostly used for-
- The INR is measured in the laboratory on the basis of prothrombin time. People who are taking warfarin should take this test regularly to evaluate whether their INR is between their recommend goal or not i.e. between 2.0 and 3.0.
- The prothrombin time evaluation is also necessary in cases of severe infections, unexplained bleeding, and liver disability to synthesize clotting factors.
If you are not diagnosed with any of these concerns then get this test done proactively once in every two years interval otherwise if you are medically diagnosed with a condition then get this test done on a more frequent basis (guided by a healthcare provider) for the sake of your life.
Pap Smears Test
This test is very essential for all women in order to prevent their risk of cervical cancer which is one of the most commonly diagnosed types of cancer worldwide. The USPSTF recommends that after the age of 21 to 65 all girls and women should proactively get this test done in order to reduce their chances of cancer disease which is a life-threatening condition.
This proactive step will save your health and life by diagnosis this condition in its very preliminary stage if it has started growing and can protect you from the pain and difficulty involved in the surgery process which is the ultimate treatment option.
In the Pap Smears test, the healthcare specialist uses a speculum in order to widen the patient’s vaginal canal and then takes a few cells from the cervix via a small brush. After that this removed cell is monitored to evaluate whether any changes have happened in this or not that may lead to cervical cancer.
Women aging 30 and above should get this test done on an interval of every five years as this can also help in detecting any STD or sexually transmitted disease along with your risk of cervical cancer.
Blood Glucose Test
After the age of 40, every man and woman should proactively get this test done in order to detect their diabetes or pre-diabetes health condition in their initial phases if exists.
The blood glucose test is done in two phases one is done in your fasting mode and another one is done after your diet intake. The normal tests range may vary but if your fasting plasma glucose test reading comes 100 mg/dl or greater then it indicates to your prediabetic health condition as per the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases. Whereas if your reading is higher than 126 mg/dl then it indicates the diabetes health issue.
People who are obese or have a family history of diabetes or belongs to a certain race or ethnicity who are at risk should have this blood glucose test at least once in every year after the age of 30 as these factors increase their risk of developing diabetes more than any other normal person.
Early-stage diagnosis can prevent the transformation of your pre-diabetic symptoms into diabetes which is a life- long disease and increases your risk for other major health complications.
Last but not least don’t neglect your dental health as this is equally important as any other organ of your body. Along with your regular dental hygiene including two time brushing, flossing and tongue cleansing it is also essential that you visit a dentist at least once in a year no matter whether you are currently facing any dental health issue or not.
This preventive measure can protect you against different dental health problems like receding gums, plaque buildup, etc by detecting them at the very initial stages if any of them is developing. The dental screening test includes an examination of your teeth and gums, cleaning, and X-rays test by your doctor.
This detail checkup of your dental area by the dentist is essential for all age groups of people including children to older adults. It is advised to adult people go for dental checkups twice in a year, as this is the time when most of the dental problems started to develop.
As these ten tests that you should take biennially eliminates your risk of major and life-threatening health conditions so it must not be ignored at any cost. Also, many of these tests are covered by the insurance policies so you can also check the same with your insurance provider regarding their specific coverage plan. However, in spite of their expensive cost, these must not be ignored whether you get any insurance coverage for them or not as this preventive step can protect your life from major health complications.View Article Sources