Items in AFP with MESH term: Preventive Health Services
ABSTRACT: The simple request for a sick note can disguise important medical, psychologic or social issues. Disability may be influenced by social and cultural factors as well as by patient expectations. Assessment of impairment and subsequent disability is best made on the basis of objective data by use of a biopsychosocial model to ensure that the expression of disability does not mask other unaddressed psychologic or social issues. Enabling prolonged disability in such a situation can be a dysfunctional physician response to a maladaptive process. The physician's role is to treat the condition, to fulfill the appropriate role of patient advocate, to facilitate health (including resumption of activity), to offer proactive advice on the basis of prognosis, to be familiar with the patient's social obligations and resources and to provide education about the therapeutic benefits of returning to optimal function. This factual, medical-based approach offers an effective preventive strategy that will save many patients from unnecessary disability and morbidity.
ABSTRACT: The leading causes of adolescent mortality are accidents (death from unintentional injury), homicide, and suicide. Additional morbidity is related to drug, tobacco, and alcohol use; risky sexual behaviors; poor nutrition; and inadequate physical activity. One third of adolescents engage in at least one of these high-risk behaviors. Physicians should specifically target these risk factors with preventive counseling, although adolescents may be reluctant to initiate discussions about risky behaviors because of confidentiality concerns. The key to providing relevant and useful preventive counseling for adolescent patients is developing the trust necessary to discuss the specific issues that impact this age group.
ABSTRACT: Certain modifiable risk factors for cardiovascular disease have their beginnings in childhood. Cigarette smoking, hypertension, physical inactivity, obesity, hypercholesterolemia, hyperinsulinemia, homocysteinemia and poor nutrition in childhood and adolescence may all contribute to the development of cardiovascular disease in adulthood. Identifying at-risk children and adolescents is the first step in modifying or preventing these risk factors. Intervention is most effectively accomplished with an integrated family-oriented approach. Involving the entire family in counseling about interventions to reduce the risk factors for coronary artery disease is important. The family should complete a questionnaire about the family's history and risk of cardiovascular disease. The child, along with other family members, should be given advice on dietary changes to reduce fat intake. Incorporating a cardiovascular health schedule into routine office visits is useful for monitoring the risk of cardiovascular disease and for reinforcing the need to maintain healthy habits.
ABSTRACT: The number of persons 65 years of age and older continues to increase dramatically in the United States. Comprehensive health maintenance screening of this population is becoming an important task for primary care physicians. As outlined by the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force, assessment categories unique to elderly patients include sensory perception and injury prevention. Geriatric patients are at higher risk of falling for a number of reasons, including postural hypotension, balance or gait impairment, polypharmacy (more than three prescription medications) and use of sedative-hypnotic medications. Interventional areas that are common to other age groups but have special implications for older patients include immunizations, diet and exercise, and sexuality. Cognitive ability and mental health issues should also be evaluated within the context of the individual patient's social situation-not by screening all patients but by being alert to the occurrence of any change in mental function. Using an organized approach to the varied aspects of geriatric health, primary care physicians can improve the care that they provide for their older patients.
Focus on the Family, Part II: Does a Family Focus Affect Patient Outcomes? - Improving Patient Care
Race and Preventive Services Delivery - Improving Patient Care
Another Ounce of Prevention - Getting Paid