Preventive health care

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:

The following are some of the tests that may be done or scheduled:

See also: Physical exam frequency for recommendations by age group

Another part of preventive health is learning to recognize changes in your body that may not be normal, so you can see your health care provider right away, including:

  • A lump anywhere on your body
  • Losing weight without trying
  • A lasting fever
  • A cough that does not go away
  • Body aches and pains that do not go away
  • Changes or blood in your stools
  • Skin changes or sores that do not go away or get worse
  • Other changes or symptoms that are new or do not go away

References

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans: Recommendation statement. 2008. Accessed March 20, 2011.

U.S. Preventive Services Task Force.Guide to clinical preventive services 2008. Rockville, MD. 2008. AHRQ publications 08-05122. Accessed March 20, 2011.

Woolf SH. Principles of preventive health care. In: Goldman L, Ausiello D, eds. Cecil Medicine. 23rd ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Saunders Elsevier;2007:chap 12.


Review Date: 3/20/2011
Reviewed By: David C. Dugdale, III, MD, Professor of Medicine, Division of General Medicine, Department of Medicine, University of Washington School of Medicine. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.
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