The core objective of preventive medicine is to keep you healthy and limit the impact of disease throughout your life. Here, doctors, or physicians, use preventive measures so the focus is not just about fixing your issues when you are sick. They work also to ensure sickness is minimised and that any health issues are detected early so that you have the maximum chance of making a full recovery to optimum health in a short space of time.
We hear a lot these days about “prevention” through eating a healthy diet, taking regular exercise, drinking enough water, limiting alcohol consumption, not smoking and generally taking measures to live a healthy life.
Living a healthy lifestyle is part of preventive medicine, and certainly integrates all of these variables.
However, preventive medicine also used the latest innovative technology and medical expertise to assess risk, detect conditions early and to aid treatment. Even with the healthiest lifestyle, conditions can develop below the surface, unnoticed. It is only by an in-depth assessment and forming a partnership with a medical expert that the true picture of your health can emerge.
Preventive medicine is not only something that can help your healthcare, it actually saves lives.
- It detects risk areas related to your health that can be avoided though changes in lifestyle
- It uses western medicine combined with the latest technology to review problem areas in your health
- It limits the severity of disease at the time of diagnosis
- Treatment of disease is easier when picked up at an early stage, so it enhances success rates
- It limits disabilities and preserves autonomy of individuals when ageing
- Vaccines can save lives
A good example of how preventive medicine saves lives relates to cancer treatment.
Colon cancer, that is diagnosed through Health Screening via a colonoscopy test, can typically be cured without chemotherapy etc. On the contrary, if diagnosed with colon cancer after going to see the doctor for a bleeding rectum, or other symptoms, would likely require surgery with colostomy and chemotherapy.
Ovarian cancer, that is diagnosed at early stage with preventative medicine is 70% curable. On the other hand, ovarian cancer diagnosed following the patient complaining of pain and waiting for the doctor to make the required tests can have until 90% mortality.
In additional to cancer, cardiovascular tests as part of regular Health Screening prevents early death by generally controlling smoking, weight, diabetes, blood pressure and cholesterol levels.
“Preventive medicine should be part of primary care” Dr Alix Daniel
The UK has a higher cancer mortality compared with other European countries, mostly due to late diagnosis from a the lack of preventative measures in the general healthcare system. There is a lack of awareness and understanding of preventative medicine among GPs, which contributes heavily to the overall problem.
It takes, on average, four consultations for a young person to be diagnosed with cancer in UK. Realistically, it should be only one consultation for a doctor, who has the time and the skills to establish a clear dialogue.
This reduced dialogue between the patient and the doctor and an overall lack of continuity, means many cases don’t get the care and attention they deserve.
The advantage with independent healthcare is that the doctors are able to spend more time with you, understanding your specific health needs.
Preventative medicine can benefit everyone. However, the benefits are different according the commitment of the individual, and his/her age. Before 40, information and a close link with one dedicated doctor, is what is important. Between 40 and 70, chronic disease is the risk, and preventative medicine is the answer for the prevention of chronicity. After 70, preventative medicine helps to preserve autonomy and helps in the case of immediate need.
General preventive medicine, as practiced at Foresight Medical Centre, combines the following and is tailored to your specific requirements.
- Regular Health Screening
- Medical Treatment
- Continuity of Care
- Available Same Day Treatment
Take a preventative approach to your health
Our Harley Street Medical Centre is open from 8:30am – 5:00pm, Monday to Friday.
Telephone: 0207 935 7501