The top 3 killer diseases in Malaysia:
No. 1: Heart Diseases
No. 2: Cancer
No. 3: Stroke
It’s sad to know that on all together- these 3 diseases combined take away one life every 5 minutes. All the 3 diseases are preventable and treatable with early screening.
Most of the time, we never thought of visiting the doctor until it is too late. Many a times, IJN (National Heart Institute) will receive emergency cases of people collasping suddenly due to heart attack. By the time the patient reaches IJN, it is already too late- since our brain cannot survive more than 3 minutes without oxygen. And heart attack does not necessarily strike those who are sedentary and/or overweight- it can strike apparently healthy and active adults too. It can be due to diet, genetics or stress- an active young person who always eat food rich in saturated fat (especially those on high protein diet) is susceptible as the saturated fat would cause gradual blockage in the arteries.
The New Straits Times paper published a very useful article titled Nip Diseases in the Bud (15 September 2008) that explains the need to go for regular health screenings to detect diseases before they became serious or better still, nip diseases in the bud. The article is writen by Suzanna Pillay. I would strongly recommend you read the article.
From the observation that I made, it is indeed very sad that many people are dying younger and younger. If you don’t believe me, read the obituary pages in the papers, the notices no longer indicate people passing away in their ripe old age. You will see a lot of people passing away in their 40s and 50s- some of them owing many big companies. So it is worth to work so hard in your life only to die before enjoying the fruits of your retirement? All it takes is to take one day out of the 365 days to go for medical screening. Early detection may save you your life and ensure you have many more good years to live. If you love yourself and your family enough, you should take time to get yourself and your loved ones checked.
The article also provides general guidelines to the type of checkup we should seek (below are taken from the article):
THESE are the check-ups generally offered by health screening centres:
• eye exam (checking for vision, cataracts and glaucoma)
• comprehensive blood screening (checking blood count, blood clotting ability, cholesterol levels, blood sugar levels, kidney and liver functions, thyroid function, electrolyte levels and PSA screening for prostrate cancer)
• mammogram (checking for breast cancer)
• pelvic exam and pap smear
• nutrition counselling
• electrocardiogram (checking heart rhythms)
• pulmonary function
• audiogram (checking hearing loss)
• Carotid Scan (a quick carotid duplex ultrasound scan and a blood pressure check for severe hypertension).