On Your Health

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Preventive Health Screenings

by Justin Sparkes, D.O., internal medicine

Preventive care is the most important step you can take to manage your health. We emphasize preventive care because prevention is easier than curing. Your doctor might want to perform some preventive health screenings on your next appointment. Dr. Justin Sparkes, D.O., internal medicine explains these screenings and how they benefit you.

Hi I'm Doctor Justin Sparkes, internal medicine with INTEGRIS. I've been with INTEGRIS about ten years so I appreciate the opportunity to talk to you about preventive health and the benefits it can bring to you. We're going to talk about getting the opportunity to bring into the office in your blood pressure screenings done talk about weight, get your cholesterol, and talk about how these things can impact you and prevent diseases from ever happening such as heart attacks and strokes just to name a couple of them. There's many other benefits to addressing these but when we are given the option to address these with you and make lifestyle changes, maybe not even medicines, that might come into the picture later, we can change the course a person's entire life just by that guidance. Preventing those catastrophic things from ever happening and if they have happened to prevent them from happening again. And to make that life, each individual life being precious that individual life better going down the road. So that can be a much better quality experience for everybody involved. And it allows us to have to take fewer interventions in a patient. Some of the things we want to do with preventive health or gonna be involved in screenings we may need to have other doctors involved with. Things like skin exams that may need to be referred to dermatology. Perhaps a lesion taken off. Some of those things we can do right in our own offices. Some of them may need to go out. Colonoscopies or at least colon cancer screening. Sometimes the colonoscopy may not be appropriate. We may be able to get by with just some simple testing cards that we may use. Some in breast exams so those are although those almost always are going to involve mammography. But sometimes it may just be an office exam that we can do and advice somebody on their need to go with further steps. Prostate exams Prostate cancer screenings with blood tests, All of these things have pluses and minuses. Their all individual decisions that a patient needs to make with the guidance a provider. And then we can help arrange those for those things to happen if the tests are abnormal allows to arrange the next step so that these interventions may prevent catastrophic health consequences later down the line. Other things we want to be able to address are vaccinations and say what's appropriate for this age? What are the benefits? What are the risks? Flu, pneumonia, shingles vaccine, all of the pediatric vaccines, tetanus shots, pertussis vaccines, all of these things you may have seen in the news. This will be an opportunity to sit down one-on-one with a provider answer those questions and say is this right for you right now? Is this right for a loved one? Is this something we to have arranged? The other part of preventative management is if some of these diseases: diabetes, cholesterol, hypertension, thyroid disease, arthritis are already present part of that is to say let's identify it. Let's identify a game plan. Just a plan, a health plan to say what are we gonna do about this in the short term long term. Advise patients of some risks some warning signs to come back in before that next schedule appointment may come around and say hey Doc I know you wanted to see me a little bit earlier this is going on. Okay thank you for the opportunity. We can oftentimes prevent the small problems from becoming bigger problems. So I certainly hope you'll take the time to engage with us. Your time is the most precious thing that you have to give us and we appreciate the gift of it and we hope we make use of that efficiently So please come to us at INTEGRIS so we may develop these preventive strategies with you and we appreciate the opportunity for doing so. Thank you.