Physical exams are required for many things, like getting into school, getting a job, or playing sports. But it’s also essential to have them done in your family. That’s where your family doctor comes in. They can support diagnosis and treat numerous diseases.
A medical examination, also called a physical assessment, is a process that helps ensure people stay in good health. It is mainly preventive, but it can also help with the early detection and treatment of diseases. It will improve the prognosis.
Take control of your health.
- The researchers from Calgary, Alberta, wanted to know if physical examinations are still necessary in the modern world. They also wanted to know what family physicians think about the process.
- They conducted in-depth qualitative interviews with 16 family doctors from Canada to find out. These included 20 years of experience as doctors, recent family medicine graduates, public health doctors, and retired internists.
- The researchers explored the experiences of doctors who conduct physical examinations. The respondents included seven men and nine women, whose experiences varied widely depending on rural or urban. The team recorded the interviews, transcribed them, and determined initial themes using template analysis.
- The analysis publicized in the Annals of Family Medicine found that physical examinations are important to doctors. They also found that physical examinations can help gather data from patients, in addition to diagnostic laboratory procedures.
Get a physical examination and feel confident about your health.
The participants were asked to describe two aspects of the physical examination – diagnosing and estimating prognosis. It allows doctors to understand their patients better and to use their bodies to experience what the patients are feeling.
The doctors said that besides getting diagnostic data from physical examinations, the process also helps with empathy. This is because, during physical examinations, the doctors can put their hands on the patients and help to heal them. Physical examinations also strengthen relationships between doctors and patients. This helps to create trust and a better rapport between them.
Physical examination is essential for family physicians. It does not just help us figure out what is wrong with people, but it also allows us to treat them. Physical examination is a vital part of relationship-centered care in family practice.
The researchers said they didn’t know what the patients experienced or expected. However, previous studies showed that patients expect to be examined and are less satisfied when physicians don’t examine them.
What to expect during your physical assessment
Physical assessment or examination means doing many things. It can be confirmed with diagnostic tests. The doctor will first need to interview and ask questions about your health. These questions may be about your job, relationships, allergies, family history of diseases, recent surgeries, supplements, and medicines.
The doctor will check your vital signs during the physical exam. These include your blood pressure, pulse rate, respiratory rate, and temperature. The doctor will also look at you and see any conditions. Then the doctor will do a head-to-toe exam to look at your head, eyes, back, chest, abdomen, muscles, and bones, and how well they are working.
The doctor will feel your body to find any abnormalities. They will also test your reflexes and how you move.