Last Updated: Aug 10th, 2004

21 Tests Your Doctor Won’t Order…Unless You Know To Ask
By David Johnson, Ph.D., and David Sandmire, M.D., with Daniel Klein

 ( book could save lives. Over the past decade, significant advances have been made in the field of medical testing—so much so that potentially deadly diseases can now be detected before becoming fatal. The only catch is—knowing how to ask your doctor.

"Medical Tests That Can Save Your Life": 21 Tests Your Doctor Won’t Order…Unless You Know To Ask (Rodale; August 2004), by David Johnson, Ph.D., and David Sandmire, M.D., with Daniel Klein, explores the healthcare world in a new, revealing way. Lifesaving medical tests are available, but at a price. Because these tests are costly, medical insurers and HMOs typically will not pay for them—especially if the patient has no apparent symptoms of a particular disease. Faced with insurance companies that won’t pay and patients who can’t afford to pay, doctors often fail to order potentially life-saving tests.

This book reveals how to beat deadly diseases through early detection—and how to get the support of doctors and healthcare providers in the process. Many potentially fatal diseases, including breast cancer, osteoporosis, lung cancer, type 2 diabetes, and coronary heart disease, can be caught through testing and treated before symptoms ever arise. By doing so, a patient’s chances of developing full-blown cancer or another terminal disease are drastically reduced. The first step of this process is developing a personal risk profile, which is used to assess health risks for specific diseases. A risk profile should include:

· Age, Gender & Ethnicity
· Personal & Family Medical History
· Smoking History & Alcohol Use
· Environmental Risk Factors
· Diet & Exercise

Consider the example of coronary heart disease (CHD). Each year, about 250,000 people suffer a fatal heart attack in the United States. For nearly half of these individuals this attack is the first and last symptom of CHD. Now consider an overweight male with high blood pressure, a sedentary lifestyle, and a family history of CHD. By observing the risk factors of this disease he will recognize his high possibility of developing CHD. Aware of this elevated risk, he can take four tests to assess the level of danger:

· C-Reactive Protein Test
· Electron Beam Computed Tomogram (EBCT)
· Isotope Treadmill Stress Test (ITST)
· Homocysteine Test

Often doctors delay ordering such tests until serious symptoms appear. How can you receive the proper testing before diseases become incurable? MEDICAL TESTS THAT CAN SAVE YOUR LIFE offers strategies for convincing your doctor to order the tests and your insurance company to foot the bills. And if your insurer won’t pay, the book lets you know where to go to get the tests for a reasonable price. After taking one or more of these tests and determining a blockage exists, you can take those all-important early steps toward prevention or recovery. There are several treatment methods to choose from, such as:

· Lifestyle Changes – Eating a healthier diet, reducing stress, quitting smoking, and getting regular exercise to help prevent further build-up of deposits in the coronary arteries.
· Medications – Aspirin, cholesterol-lowering drugs, antianginal medications, and angiotensin II will prevent CHD progression.
· Balloon Angioplasty – This is a procedure used by one-third of CHD sufferers. It opens partially-blocked arteries by pushing plaque back against the arterial wall.
· Stenting – After a balloon angioplasty, wire-mesh metal tubes are inserted inside arteries to support damaged arterial walls.
· Coronary Artery Bypass Graft Surgery (CABG) – CABG involves removing a healthy blood vessel from the patient’s leg, chest or arm, and using it to create a detour around the blocked artery.

From prevention and treatment of coronary heart disease to lung cancer, hepatitis C to HIV and AIDS, this book offers much more to the reader than any other of it’s kind. It reveals what tests work, where to get them, how much they cost, the risks involved, and everything else one needs to know about MEDICAL TESTS THAT CAN SAVE YOUR LIFE.

David Johnson, Ph.D., author of Feel 30 for the Next 50 Years, is an associate professor at the College of Osteopathic Medicine, University of New England, and adjunct professor at Boston University School of Medicine.

David Sandmire, M.D., is an associate professor in the department of biological sciences at the University of New England, where he teaches neuroscience, anatomy and physiology, and cardiovascular physiology. Both authors live in Kennebunk, Maine.

Daniel Klein has written or ghostwritten numerous books on science, medicine, and psychology, including The SAMe Cure and Tales from a Traveling Couch. He currently resides in Great Barrington, Massachusetts.

21 Tests You Doctor Won’t Order…Unless You Know To Ask
By David Johnson, Ph.D., David Sandmire, M.D., and Daniel Klein
Rodale Books / August 2004 / $14.95
6” x 9” / 250 pages / ISBN 1-57954-732-X
Copyright 2004 by
© Health News 1999.

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