Many people are reactive to their health concerns, which is understandable.They develop symptoms which lead them to seek help, obtain a diagnosis and the right treatment intervention. However increasing numbers of patients are realising that it may pay to be more proactive.
An annual health screen, performed by an experienced clinician, may not only pick up problems that need medical intervention, but may also actively encourage the patient to look at reducing the risk of developing actual pathology by assessing functional disturbance, much of which is influenced by lifestyle (stress/anxiety, poor nutritional choices, poor neuromuscular function, lack of appropriate exercise, smoking and excessive consumption of alcohol and recreational drugs).
The Health Equation offers a comprehensive health screen: The Health Equation Health Screen
Click on the image above to download our Heath Screening Brochure.
The Health Equation Health Screen is conducted by our Diagnostic Consultant-Complementary Medicine, Mr Gerry Gajadharsingh DO and has several parts to it.
The Diagnostic Consultation
- a case history (exploring any current symptoms)
- past medical history
- family medical history
- general health and a review of systems (such as cardiovascular, respiratory, gastrointestinal, genitourinary, neurological, Osteopathic neuromuscular-skeletal/orthopaedic, dermatological, psychological etc).
This specialised piece of equipment is used for measuring (non invasively) the following:
- ETCO2 levels
- breathing rate
- heart rate
- heart rate variability
It is the most scientific method of diagnosing Breathing Pattern Disorder (BPD). It also evaluates an individual’s autonomic nervous system response.This is cutting edge technology and gives the clinician great insight into not only respiratory behaviour and function (which influences many chemical reactions in the body and mind including cellular oxygenation and control of pH) but evaluation of the autonomic nervous system, which controls all of our body systems.
Tests help with the diagnostic process to eliminate the presence of suspected disease processes or to help with the patients’ management / treatment strategy.
The diagnostic tests included in the Individual Health Screen are:
- Holter 24hr ECG Analysis
- Comprehensive blood analysis, EQ2 and EQ6, including haematology (Full blood count & 5 part differentials & ESR) & biochemistry (24 parameters) & CRP –
- Includes lipid profile & blood glucose, and thyroid function (TSH, FT4 & FT3)
- Urine analysis
- Quantitative Faecal Immunochemical Test (QFIT) over age 45, new in January 2020
You will fitted with a Holter device for 24 hours to record the electrical activity of your heart. This will need to be dropped back to the practice to be uploaded online to the laboratory in order for the technician to reproduce the 24 hr ECG analysis report.
There are literally thousands of markers that can be tested for using blood samples.
We have chosen a screening blood panel (EQ2) for the Individual Health Screen which is a Haematology (Full blood Count & 5 part differential/ Biochemistry (24 parameters) screen. This looks at red blood cells, white blood cells, and inflammatory markers ESR/CRP, kidney function, liver function, blood glucose, lipid profile, uric acid, calcium, phosphate and iron markers. We also test for thyroid function (EQ6) using TSH, Free T4 and Free T3.
It is very useful to use screening panels of blood tests, that cover the major body systems in the first instance, rather than just choosing individual parameters, especially as a screening test, when patients may not actually have any significant symptoms.
Functional Blood Analysis
We also use cutting edge software from the USA, to analyse your blood results, Functional Blood Analysis. Most clinicians interpret blood results using “medical reference ranges” provided by the laboratories. Which means if there is no obvious pathology, patients are told they are “normal”. Now this can be a good thing, but sometimes when results are lower end of normal or higher end of normal we can give a “functional” interpretation of these results, offering very useful advice to patients. It certainly has helped us being more accurate in advice, treatment & management for many patients who had previous being told “there is nothing wrong with you”.
The report is quite comprehensive and comes as part of your health screen.
- Functional Blood Analysis
- Functional Nutritional Assessment (indication of nutritional status)
- Functional Index Report (indication of the level of dysfunction that exists in the various physiological systems of the body)
Urine analysis helps with detection of infection in the genitourinary tract or kidneys, kidney problems, diabetes, dehydration, prostate problems, metabolic problems affecting pH amongst others. Abnormal urine analysis results may require further lab investigations at additional cost.
The QFIT test detects small amounts of blood in your faeces, which you would not normally see or be aware of.
Why is the QFIT test done?
There are several disorders, which may cause bleeding into the gut (intestine). For example, gastric or duodenal ulcers, ulcerative colitis, bowel polyps, and bowel(colorectal) cancer. If these bleed heavily then your stools (faeces) would be obviously bloody or a very black colour. However, sometimes these disorders only bleed with a trickle of blood. If you only have a small amount of blood in your faeces then the faeces look normal. However, the QFIT test will detect the blood and also the quantity of blood. So, the test may be done if you have symptoms in the tummy (abdomen) such as persistent pain. It may also be done to screen for bowel cancer before any symptoms develop (see below). The risk of bowel cancer rises steeply from around the age of 50-54 years. QFIT testing uses specific antibodies against human haemoglobin and quantifies the amount of blood in the stool. The threshold for screening is set at 80 mcgHb/g and for symptomatic individuals at 10 mcgHb/g.
Note: the QFIT test can only say that you are bleeding from somewhere in the gut. It cannot tell from which part. If the test is positive then further tests will be arranged to find the source of the bleeding – usually, colonoscopy and/or endoscopy.
You will be given a QFIT test kit to do the stool sample at home, it is easy to use and only needs one sample, to be posted back to TDL, the laboratory.
- Prostate Profile (Total PSA and Free PSA) from age 50 or earlier if requested.
We do not offer a DRE (digital rectal examination) to men as many clinicians are now questioning its usefulness in screening, please see my blog post on 30.5.18
Prostate-specific antigen (PSA) is a glycoprotein that is produced by the prostate gland and the urethra. Normally, very little PSA is secreted in the blood. Increases in glandular size and tissue damage caused by benign prostatic hypertrophy, prostatitis, or prostate cancer may increase circulating PSA levels.
Higher total PSA levels and lower percentages of free PSA are associated with higher risks of prostate cancer.
The percentage of measured prostate-specific antigen (PSA) existing in the free form (free: total PSA ratio) is useful in assessing the risk of prostate cancer in patients with borderline or moderately increased total PSA (4.0-10.0 ng/mL) and has been used to help select men who should have follow-up prostate biopsy or further investigations.
The NHS offers comprehensive screening for breast and cervical cancer, therefore we do not offer mammogram or cervical smears as part of womens’ health screening.
As the likelihood of getting breast cancer increases with age, all women aged from 50 to their 71st birthday, and registered with a NHS GP, are automatically invited for breast cancer screening via mamogramme every 3 years.
You may be eligible for breast screening before the age of 50 if you have a very high risk of developing breast cancer
Cervical screening isn’t a test for cancer, it’s a test to check the health of the cells of the cervix.
Most women’s test results show that everything is normal, but for around 1 in 20 women the test shows some abnormal changes in the cells of the cervix.
Most of these changes won’t lead to cervical cancer and the cells may go back to normal on their own.
But in some cases, the abnormal cells need to be removed so they can’t become cancerous.
All women who are registered with a NHS GP are invited for cervical screening:
- aged 25 to 49– every 3 years
- aged 50 to 64– every 5 years
- over 65– only women who have recently had abnormal tests
Other additional parameters can be requested depending on the clinical picture and the results of initial screening, such as, rheumatology markers, osteoporosis markers, male and female hormonal function, tumour markers, antibodies, sexual health screening, HIV testing etc. These follow on tests are at an additional cost and will only be carried out if deemed clinically necessary or if patients specifically request certain tests.
Patients are increasingly asking about blood tests relating to screening for cancer, these are called tumour markers. There are pros and cons about running these tests, which can be arranged at an additional cost. Please see the information below.
Additional investigations, if clinically indicated, such as x-rays and other imaging, Coronary calcium scan, Carotid US etc will be arranged at one of our local hospitals/clinics, usually on a drop-in basis and are charged separately.
The Individual Health Screen will last approx 75 minutes and will include a comprehensive written report (usually at least 32 pages), this will include all your results, any follow up investigations or opinions from Medical Specialists suggested and lot of advice to help you be proactive about your health. It also includes a Cardiovascular Risk Assessment via JBS3, FRAX Fracture Risk Assessment via NOGG and a Smokers Lung Cancer Risk Assessment.
Patients may also request a 15 minute follow up consultation, in person or by phone, if they need clarification on certain aspects of their report or for follow up advice.
I have been a patient of Gerry’s for several years for a variety of health issues. On each occasion I have been impressed with his thorough grasp and holistic understanding of the particular issue I am describing. He has an amazing ability to get to the cause of any problem together with an in depth knowledge of strategies, both complementary and conventional to tackle these. The results have been staggering. I have no hesitation in highly recommending Gerry to anyone wishing to get to the heart of any health issue they may have.
Gerry has mended my body and mind many, many times over the last 25 years. I first went to him to piece me together following a horse racing fall with the instruction to “get me back on a horse as soon as possible”. His practical, no fuss approach, suited my needs at the time and he did just what I asked, very effectively. My needs and his practice have developed a long way since then, but his ability to diagnose and find the right treatment is second to none. I always feel better following a session with Gerry and, if I have a friend in pain, whatever the condition, Gerry is the first person I recommend they go and see.
Gerry, the truth is that you have been highly instrumental in keeping me upright and active over the years, and it has been fantastic to have someone who understands my condition(s) so well that I do not have to say anything…just lie there, and under your expert guidance, just get better…!
I have found Gerry to be understanding and expert in his treatment of me over many years. He has demonstrated not just a technical expertise but a personal understanding of the human nature of a patient- consultant relationship in which he excels and which is so rare. I have no hesitation in