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HEALTH SCREENING- What you should know..

There are many types of health screening plan offered in Singapore but you should know what you want to screen for and what is cost effective .

The expensive blood tests offered, usually include the tumour markers (it is misleading to think that with these tests, you can rule out tumours). Most of these expensive tests are used to follow up people with known tumours already and are not proven to be a good screening tool. However, some tumour markers are worth doing, eg Alpha feto- protein for someone who is a hepatitis carrier, Prostatic Specific Antigen (PSA) for prostate cancer in high-risk patients. So please ask the doctor for advise when you go for any health screen.

Recommended Tests

  • Full cholesterol test every year for men > 35 yrs old, and women > 45 yrs old.
  • Regular Blood Pressure checks.
  • Colorectal Cancer check from age 45 - Yearly stool check, and colonoscopy once every 10 yrs (Starting from age 50 ).
  • Cervical Cancer check every 1 to 3 yrs from the age of 25 or when sexually active.
  • A mammogram to check for breast cancer every year, starting at age 40 . 2 yearly for age 50 and above .
  • Diabetes test every year from age 40 and above.

Other Useful Optional Test.

  • Hepatitis A and B screen
  • Stool for blood for > 50 yrs old
  • PAP smear for ladies >25 yrs old or sexually active
  • Diabetes screen
  • Cholesterol screen
  • Chest X-ray
  • ECG for comparison later in life
  • Mammogram from age 40, every 1 year
  • Bone density screen for 65 and above, for osteoporosis
  • Urine analysis

Other Optional tests available in the clinic

  • Ultrasound of the liver, gall bladder, thyroid
  • Ultrasound bladder, kidneys, pancreas, spleen, uterus, ovaries

WHAT YOU NEED TO DO BEFORE THE TEST

  • For Blood test:
    • Fast from 10 pm to 9am, no food or drink except plain water. Eat your dinner normally, do not starve nor go for a buffet.
  • For Stool test:
    • Take a high fibre diet 2 days before and during test
    • Avoid- (red/rare meat), (turnip, cauliflower, broccoli, horseradish, cantaloupe and parsnip), (Vitamin C, certain Pain Killers eg Ponstan, Synflex & Alcohol)
    • Allow to take small amount of well-cooked chicken, fish, vegetables (lettuce, corn, spinach, carrots, celery, fruits like prunes and apple)
  • For Ultrasound Scan:
    • Stomach area: Need to fast, without water for a minimum of 4 to 6hrs
    • Bladder area: Keep bladder full by drinking 4 glasses of water an hour before examination.

 
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