Medical Information - A Physical Exam Study Guide
Physical Exam Study Guides
Physical examinations entail the systematic inspection of patients by a doctor for signs or symptoms of disease attacks. Medical examinations of this nature are usually based on four different components which include critical examination or inspection, palpation or the method of clinical examination which involves the practical use of fingers to observe changes in the size of body tissues or organs, percussion or the method which deals with the production of sounds to detect the outcome of other sounds made in the body and auscultation which deals with the use of a stethoscope to listen to sounds produced in the body.
A Doctor’s general examination or physical examination, which is carried out on a routine basis, is an important task that is done to ensure the total well-being of patients and to maintain their health. In this regards, it is very important that a physician identifies one’s health problems before they worsen, because some diseases such as a critical high level of cholesterol and blood pressure are usually observed when a test is conducted, and this can only be possible when there is routine visits by a patient for medical checkups.
Vital signs or the signs that indicate life, such as body temperature, blood pressure, pulse and breathing are usually seen by physicians as the basis to determine the most important body functions. Body temperature is usually taken to determine if a patient has a temperature, and an instrument for measuring temperature called a thermometer is use to ascertain this. Blood pressure is usually measured with a sphygmomanometer, an instrument that consists of an inflatable cuff placed around the upper right arm, a pressure gauge and an inflator bulb, which is use to note diastolic and systolic pressure readings. A timer that is analyzed and watched by feeling a person’s radial artery to note the number of beats is used to measure a patients pulse at the wrist level. Also, a stethoscope is used to measure the breathing or respiratory rates of a patient when placed on the chest.
Back and Extremity Exam
This type of examination is carried out by a physician on a patient, to measure the patient’s range of motion. Back and extremity exams are medical examinations that are done to inspect the movement of muscles, joints and to distinguish limbs from each other so as to examine and assess any swollen area or deformity. The range of motion is done by the physician to detect any damaged parts of the body and is both an active and a passive examination. For the active, the movement of the extremity is done by the patient to determine the range of motion, while the passive examination is carried out by the physician to move the patient’s extremity to examine the range of motion before pain or sensitivity is sensed.
Chest and Lung Exam
A chest and lung exam deals with the critical examination of a patient’s breathing rate by the physician. Unusual sounds and depth of breaths are observed; a physician may assess the chest and lungs by placing their hands on the patient’s back and asking them to breathe deeply. This checks the percussion of the chest and then auscultation is assessed with a stethoscope. The sounds coming from the lungs and chest are then classified as normal, dull, or hyper resonant.
Cardiovascular examinations are carried out on a patient by a physician to observe symptoms of cardiovascular related diseases such as edema and finger clubbing. The physician will check the patient’s pulse by placing finders on the carotid artery in the neck, this checks for variations in pulse and pulse with respiration. Furthermore, a blood pressure examination could be carried out by the physician with the use of a sphygmomanometer.
Neck and Head Exam
The neck and head exam is one that is usually done to determine hair loss, scars, lesions, rashes, swelling and deformities. Since the human head is made of distinct parts that should be examined separately, a physician may critically examine such parts. In this regard, an otoscope is used to investigate the ears and nostrils for any form of redness, fluid and swelling. The patient’s throat and mouth can be examined with the use of a tongue depressor and a light to determine any unusual signs such as white patches, ulcers, or redness.
An Eye examination check is carried out by a physician to detect visual acuity. This exam is normally done with a Snellen eye chart of a Rosenbaum pocket card. The patient is asked to read the smallest line possible which helps determine visual acuity. The physician then looks for asymmetry of the eyes, ptosis of the eyelids, or lesions. Then the sclera and conjunctiva are examined along with the pupil to make sure the eye reacts normally to light. In order to receive a more thorough eye examination, the patient would have to see an optometrist or ophthalmologist.
The abdomen can be examined with a stethoscope to detect any turbulent flow of blood within blood vessels and to listen to bowel sounds. A physician can medically touch or feel parts of the abdomen by distinguishing areas that are solid and those that are filled with fluid or tendered. In addition, the abdomen is divided into quarters by the physician, to ensure that patient’s medical chart and findings on an unpleasant physical sensation are easily identified.
A breast examination is done to determine any physical changes in the structure of the breast, to inspect any growth or tumor and to note any discharge. This is done when a physician simply uses their hands to press the breast beginning at the sternum; clavicle, and gently to the nipple. This form of examination can be performed while the patient sits down or lays on the examination table, with their arm placed behind their head. Furthermore, a monthly self- examination by the patient is advisable despite the usual yearly breast examination.
A pelvic examination is done on a patient to inspect the outer part of the vagina for lesions, redness and swelling. This is carried out by a physician when they inserts their fingers into the vagina to inspect the cervix and uses their other fingers on the outside of the abdomen to check for swelling. The patient lies down, and a speculum is inserted so that the doctor can perform a Pap smear.
The neurologic exam has several phases and things physicians need to evaluate to see if the nervous system is impaired or not. Reflexes, abnormal pupils, speech articulation and sensory neurons are all assessed. A physician could likely carry out a test on the visual acuity, pupils, face, hearing and other muscles around the body to determine if a neurological incident has occurred, the reaction of pupils to light, muscular changes on a patients face, screen patients ability to hear and evaluate the muscles by asking them to squeeze their fingers and walk while he determines the state of the gait as well as the hands.
Mental Status Exam
The mental status examination is the observation of a person’s state of mind by a psychiatrist or physician through their display of actions, mood, judgment, appearances and speech, as well as historical information gotten from them. In the long run, health tests to ascertain their mental state may be administered while the patient is being evaluated.