The future of health care is unknown. The only person in charge of your health is YOU! Preventive health screenings are imperative for a variety of reasons. Every woman should make time for healthy habits — regular exercise, stress management, choosing the right foods — and she should also be scheduling routine health screenings so potential problems can be spotted early. In fact, health screenings can make keeping tabs on your health simple.
Doctors are much more capable of successfully treating many deadly diseases when they’re detected early on, which is why certain tests are especially important for women. Mammograms, bone density assessments and colonoscopies have the potential to save millions of lives.
So what screenings should you be getting?
- Mammograms. A mammogram is a screening test for breast cancer and involves applying moderate compression to the breasts so that X-ray images can be captured. Mammograms are done every one or two years beginning at age 40. New 3D mammography technology is superior to conventional 2D mammography as it detects 41% more invasive breast cancers and reduces false positives by up to 40%.
- Bone density screen. Women should start getting screened for osteoporosis with a bone density test at age 65. Women with risk factors for osteoporosis, such as having a slender frame or a fractured bone, should be screened earlier. A bone density test is the only test that can diagnose osteoporosis before a broken bone occurs. Also, if you have a condition or take a medicine that causes secondary osteoporosis, your healthcare provider may order a bone density test. This test should be done on a DXA machine. DXA stands for dual energy x-ray absorptiometry.
- Colon cancer screening. Colon cancer screening tests for women generally start at age 50. Colonoscopy screenings need to be repeated every 10 years. People with a greater risk of colon cancer may need earlier or more frequent cancer screening tests. The non-invasive virtual colonoscopy is another option. Virtual colonoscopy and conventional colonoscopy use different tools to retrieve the images of your colon. Conventional colonoscopy uses a colonoscope. This is a long, lighted tube that’s placed inside your colon and rectum. It uses a small camera to send images of the area to a video monitor. Virtual colonoscopy uses a CT scan to take pictures of the inside of your colon from outside your body.
- Body Composition scan. A full yearly physical exam includes measurements of your height and weight and a calculation of your body mass index (BMI). BMI indicates obesity, which can assess the risk of serious health conditions like diabetes and heart disease. An Advanced Body Composition Assessment, available with DXA system, provides a comprehensive look at the body, including bone, muscle, limb comparison, muscle imbalances, and more. Its high precision and accuracy make it the most reliable option available today.