New study claims routine medical physicals do not save lives.

New study claims routine medical physicals do not save lives.

Wow, this is a huge admission but it leaves food for thought as another sacred medical cow is questioned based on the science that it is based on. Along with the 45 preventative medical screens that we were told were important for our living long lives, a new study questions the value of the medical physical, where you have your blood pressure checked, your blood taken and you are screened for possible diseases and other problems that may be occurring that require intervention.

This has also been a mainstay of your life insurance company who would not write someone if they were deemed too unhealthy because your bloods where not within the acceptable ranges. How will this change your insurance exam?

While it has been known for some time that routine blood work may lead to false positives and more tests that can lead to harmful interventions, perhaps this is the beginning of the medical system’s reexamination of its disease based model since the science it is based on is now questioning its worth. Read about it below

Routine Physicals Don’t Save Lives

By Charles Bankhead, Staff Writer, MedPage Today

Published: October 16, 2012

Reviewed by Dori F. Zaleznik, MD; Associate Clinical Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School, Boston and Dorothy Caputo, MA, BSN, RN, Nurse Planner

Patients who had regular general health checkups died of cardiovascular disease and cancer at virtually the same rate as those who did not have checkups, results of a systematic review and meta-analysis showed.

Analysis of 16 clinical trials involving 183,000 patients yielded mortality risk ratios of 1.01 and 1.03 for people who had general checkups versus those who did not, according to Lasse T. Krogsboll, of the Cochrane Nordic Center in Copenhagen, and co-authors.

Nor did the data show any effect of checkups on key secondary endpoints, including hospital admission, disability, physician visits, or absenteeism from work, they reported online in the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews.

Some of the studies did show increased diagnosis of hypertension, hypercholesterolemia, and certain chronic diseases.

“General health checks did not reduce morbidity or mortality, neither overall nor for cardiovascular or cancer causes, although the number of new diagnoses was increased,” the authors wrote in conclusion.

“With the large number of participants and deaths included, the long follow-up periods used, and considering that cardiovascular and cancer mortality were not reduced, general health checks are unlikely to be beneficial,” they added.

General health checkups have long been recommended as a component of routine healthcare. Multiple studies have shown that diagnoses of serious conditions often occur incidentally, during totally unrelated exams, such as general health checkups.

Routine checkups often involve screening tests, many of which have not been evaluated in high-quality studies, the authors wrote in the introduction to their findings.

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