Are You in Need of a Medical Evaluation?
The purpose of an assessment or evaluation is to determine whether outcome criteria have been met and how care for the patient might be improved. It is not done to find fault or to lay blame for carelessness. It’s main purpose is to promote improvement in identified areas.
What are the Standard Evaluations?
Every time you visit your doctor, you may have noticed that you have a chart or file. In fact, you may have several charts at your health care provider’s office. If you’ve been to the hospital, you have a chart there too. These charts make up your personal medical history. It should have vital information such as:
- Name, birth date, blood type, emergency contact
- Date of last physical exam
- Dates and results of tests and screenings
- Major illness and surgeries with dates
- Any chronic diseases
- Any history of illnesses in your family
Blood Pressure Test
This test measures the pressure in your arteries as your heart pumps. You may have a blood pressure test as part of a routine check-up or as a screening for hypertension (high blood pressure). Having routine blood pressure testing is a part of assessing your long-term health.
Body Mass Index (BMI)
Body Mass Index is a patient’s weight in kilograms divided by the square height in meters. A high BMI can be an indication of high body fat. When your BMI is elevated, you are at an increased risk for many diseases and health concerns. Physicians typically advise their patients with a high BMI to implement daily exercises before proceeding with a medicine or procedure.
What are Advanced Evaluation Procedures?
An X-ray is a diagnostic test which implements invisible electromagnetic energy beams to create images of internal tissues, bones and organs onto film.
An Arthogram is a type of X-ray to view bone structures. It involves an injection of a contrast fluid into a joint area. When the fluid leaks into an area that it does not belong, a disease or injury may be the investigated.
Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)
Is an evaluation procedure that uses a combination of large magnets, radiofrequencies, and a computer to show detailed images of organs and structures within the body. It can often determine damage or disease in a surrounding ligament or muscle.
Computed Tomography Scan (CT or CAT Scan)
This evaluation procedure uses a combination of X-rays and computer technology to produce horizontal, or axial images, often called slices, of the body. A CT Scan highlights detailed images of any part of the body, including the bones, muscles, fat and organs. CT Scans are more detailed than a general X-Ray.
A test used to assess the health of nerve and muscle function. Commonly used to diagnose or rule out a number of conditions, such as muscle disorders, diseases that affect nerve connection and carpal tunnel syndrome.
This evaluation allows the surgeon to see inside your joint without making a large incision. Surgeons can even repair some types of joint damage during arthroscopy, with pencil-thin surgical instruments inserted through small incisions. Physicians use arthroscopy to help diagnose and treat joint conditions such as the hip, knee and shoulder.
After all medical information is collected and reviewed, your orthopedist will review your treatment options in order to help you take the next steps to promote an active and healthy lifestyle.
William J. Bryan is a board certified and fellowship trained orthopedic surgeon. To learn more about Dr. Bryan, check out his YouTube channel!