Why should I have a Preventicum Health assessment?
Prevention is better than cure. If we pick up risk factors or specific conditions early, i.e. before symptoms appear, the likelihood is that treatment will be simpler and more effective. A Preventicum Health Assessment can identify the lifestyle modification needed to reduce your long-term risk for certain diseases. 40% of men and women in the UK die from cardiovascular diseases, which are in the main, preventable if risk factors or symptoms are found early on.
How do I book a health assessment?
Click here to email
us or you can telephone us on +44 (0)20 7605 6900. Please note we take a 50% deposit at the time of booking.
Why is Preventicum different?
Preventicum is the only clinic to offer this level of health assessment in a ‘5-star’ environment. We use x-ray free MRI technology to scan the brain, heart, central arteries and organs or the abdomen and pelvis for any signs of risk factors or existing underlying problems. We combine the latest technology and consultations with experienced doctors alongside traditional examinations such as ultrasound, blood and urine analysis to offer one of the most advanced and safest full-body health assessments available.
Could the health assessment influence my health insurance risk?
Yes it could.
If the results of the health assessment are normal then this can be favourable to your insurance risk.
It is possible that we could find an issue which when declared to an insurance provider at a later stage could negatively influence your future medical insurance risk.
This is however a risk which exists at any medical consultant or interaction as health insurance companies normally ask for authority to see all previous medical records before insuring including but not limited to GP records.
How do I know if a Preventicum health assessment is suitable for me?
If you are over 30 and interested in your long-term health, then a health assessment at Preventicum is suitable for you. We use magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to obtain detailed images of specific areas of the body. MRI is x-ray free and has no known side-effects. We use the latest technology, together with experienced doctors in a ‘5-star’ clinic to provide one of the most advanced and safest full-body health assessments available in Europe.
What are the benefits of becoming a Preventicum corporate client?
- A tiered pricing structure and personalised discounts
- A dedicated account manager to oversee your account
- A dedicated member of the admin team to deal with your employees bookings and queries
- Medical health assessments offered to employees are tax exempt
- Benefits to a company include: lower absenteeism, improved productivity, reduction of staff turnover and an improvement of employer-employee relations
- For more information, please call 020 7605 6900
Do I need to prepare for the health assessment?
We require you to fast for six hours before your assessment, you may drink still water and we recommend that you are well hydrated. Please avoid tea, coffee, juice or anything fizzy, including sparkly water. When we perform the abdominal ultrasound, fasting enables the gallbladder to fill with bile and expand, making it visible on the scans. Air is naturally swallowed when we eat and drink and ultrasound imaging is unable to penetrate air, thus reducing visualisation of the abdominal organs. We also take fasting bloods, specifically for blood sugar and cholesterol. Being well hydrated by drinking still water before your blood tests makes taking blood easier.
Is there a downside to having a comprehensive health assessment?
In theory there could be
The health assessment is very thorough and in theory a ‘background finding’ of no significance could be discovered which may cause you to worry despite reassurance to the contrary. We are however very used to identifying “normal variants and incidental background findings of no consequence to health” and we expect to find these as part of the process. In our experience this is more a theoretical risk as we counsel about this hypothetical possibility. Generally, our client’s feedback that they find the whole health assessment process to be empowering, reassuring and informative.
Secondly there is a theoretical risk of ‘health complacency’ following a normal health assessment. However, we do emphasise the importance of a continued healthy lifestyle and future vigilance in reporting any new symptoms to your GP after the assessment even if everything is found to be normal on the day. No test or process, no matter how vigorous, can ever be a 100% guarantee of future good health and it is important to make this clear. Our aim is to try to be proactive rather than reactive when it comes to our most important asset, our health.
Thirdly, any test or investigation has the potential risk of a false negative (missing a significant problem), or a false positive result (identifying a problem which later turns out not to be significant).
Fourthly something could be identified which poses a dilemma as regards future management.
There are of course recognised limitations in any testing process across all aspects of life no matter how rigorously thorough and we discuss at the consultation.
What blood tests are included?
o Full blood count (haemoglobin, red cell and white cell count and platelets)
o Inflammatory markers-ESR and CRP
o Renal (kidney) function
o Liver function
o Bone profile – calcium, phosphate and uric acid (blood gout test)
o Fasting blood glucose (blood sugar level)
o HbA1c – gold standard test for diabetes and looks at the blood sugar control over a few month period giving more accurate information
o Iron profile including ferritin
o Complete lipid profile – total cholesterol, fats (triglycerides) good (HDL) cholesterol, bad (LDL) cholesterol and the most important marker affecting cardiovascular risk: the cholesterol/HDL ratio
o Vitamin D
o For women: Thyroid function tests
o For men over 50: Prostate specific antigen (PSA)
Can I add on extra blood tests?
o Yes, there are often extra blood tests that people can consider which will be discussed with the Preventicum Doctor in the morning assessment. Sometimes these blood tests may take longer to process so not available on the day, but will be detailed in the final report
o Common blood test requests include: Blood group, COVID antibody tests, menopause blood tests, fertility blood tests, B12 and folate and testosterone.
What extra liver tests can I do?
o A full history and examination is undertaken by the Preventicum Doctor
o Liver ultrasound is included in all assessments
o MRI liver is included in all ultimate and elite assessments
o Further detailed liver scanning with Perspectum which can assess liver inflammation, fat and iron deposits can be added for an extra charge of £550 when clinically appropriate.
o Further tailored liver blood tests including hepatitis screening can be added when clinically appropriate
What extra tests could I do for the menopause?
- o A full history and examination is undertaken by the Preventicum Doctor
o A menopause panel can be added which includes:
§ Follicular stimulating hormone
§ Luteinising hormone
(Thyroid function tests are already included in all the female Preventicum assessments)
Do you do the CA125 test to screen for ovarian cancer?
We perform an ultrasound and MRI (MRI is included in our Elite and Ultimate Assessments) of the ovaries which would identify any pathology, and then we would recommend further monitoring/investigation as appropriate.
CA125 is not specific as a tumour marker, so therefore is not an accurate screening test for ovarian cancer alone– it is also raised in endometriosis, fibroids and pregnancy. If we identify anything worrying from the history or imaging we would always recommend further appropriate tests including CA125
Do you do COVID-19 antibody tests?
Yes we do offer a variety of Covid antibody tests, which can assess the person’s previous exposure to Covid 19 and natural immunity, we also have new tests that can assess vaccine response including the SCOV test by Roche and VirTus test. This can be discussed with your Preventicum doctor on the day with regards to suitability and timing of the test.
Do you offer COVID-19 PCR tests for travel?
No. We do not offer PCR swabs for travel or test to release.
Do you offer breast screening as part of your health assessments?
Mammography is still considered the gold standard for the screening of breast cancer. All our health assessments routinely include a breast cancer risk assessment, a breast examination and advice on breast awareness.
We also offer an additional full breast screening service for women who require this either because it is clinically recommended based on their history or because they would like it and it is clinically appropriate. It is a consultant-led service, which can include breast ultrasound and digital mammography and is performed by a dedicated consultant breast radiologist in a nearby centre of excellence. If necessary a suspicious lesion can be sampled using FNA (fine needle aspiration) at the same consultation. This breast screening capability is supplementary to our full screen and costs a small additional fee. We can arrange a taxi from Preventicum if planned in advance.
Women 40 and over who book a Preventicum assessment should be asked if they would like this service but at an additional cost.
Why don’t you screen the breasts using MRI?
We do not currently offer MRI breast screening. MRI is good at detecting breast cancers, but this technology is still at the research stage in terms of screening. It is very good in younger women with fatty dense breasts and will probably soon surpass mammography in this context. However, it is time-consuming – screening one individual takes 40 minutes compared to ten minutes for a mammogram. If a suspicious lesion is found it may be so small as to only be detectable with MRI so it may only be possible to biopsy it under MRI control. There is thus much research to be done in this field before it becomes more widespread and we continue to monitor the situation.
What is the exercise Stress Echo test?
o Cardiac stress test has been removed from the NICE guidelines
o Stress echo (either drug or exercise) uses specialist ultrasound imaging combined with the exercise stress test to show how well the heart muscle is working to pump blood to the body, and is most often used to detect a decrease in blood flow to the heart from narrowing of the coronary arteries.
o The test assesses heart function and structure, and can diagnose underlying heart disease
o The client will have a quick echocardiogram first, then run on the treadmill to place stress on the heart, then lie down and have another echocardiogram to assess the functioning of the heart.
o An initial summary will be given on the day, with the comprehensive consultant cardiologist (Dr Rajan Sharma) report to follow.
o Preventicum is one of the first clinics in the United Kingdom to introduce stress echocardiography as part of routine health assessments.
Will you scan my lungs?
We look for symptoms and signs of respiratory disease in our detailed medical questionnaire, clinical examination and spirometry (lung function) test. The benefits of scanning the lungs using CT or chest x-rays in health assessments are debatable and medical research shows a significant number of false positives can be picked up, which can cause anxiety and further unnecessary investigations. CT scanning also involves radiation exposure, which can be harmful. Until there is more evidence of the benefits of using radiation-based screening, it is not something we will carry out at Preventicum. High-risk individuals may be referred for further investigation if our medical team feels it appropriate.
What will you look for?
- We look for the main killer diseases and their principal risk factors.
- Cardiovascular disease: 40% of adults in the UK will die from CVD.
- Signs of heart attack: 1.2million people in the UK have had a heart attack.
- Prostate cancer: most common cancer in British men and affects nearly 30,000 each year.
- Ovarian cancer: 4th most common cancer in British women and nearly 7.000 are diagnosed each year.
- High blood pressure: affects 16 million people in the UK.
Do the scans expose me to any x-rays or nuclear radiation?
No. At Preventicum we do not use scans that emit any ionising radiation (“X-rays”) nor do we use any radioactive substances. We have purposely chosen ultrasound and MRI scanning technology which use sound waves and radio waves in a magnetic field to look inside the body. There is no x-ray exposure in ultrasound or MRI scans.
When will I get my results?
The majority of your examination results, including the blood analysis, will be ready in time for your final consultation with your Preventicum doctor. Your Preventicum doctor will explain everything to you and answer any questions you may have, as well as offering lifestyle advice. Before this consultation, you will meet our radiologist and go on a unique ‘virtual tour’ of your body when he shows you all your MRI images. A full written report of all your results, with a USB of your MRI images, will be sent to you within twelve working days.
How long does a health assessment take?
An Elite Health Assessment takes approximately 6 hours, an Ultimate health assessment takes approximately 5 ½ hours and our Essential Check-Up takes approximately 4 ½ hours.
What happens if I am recommended extra tests on the day?
Although our Preventicum health assessments are very comprehensive, after taking a thorough history and carrying out a physical examination, our doctors may sometimes recommend further tests. If the doctor recommends an extra test or scan outside the usual scope of the health assessment and we are able to perform this for you at Preventicum, then the doctor will discuss this with you at the time and you can make an informed decision as to whether to proceed. If an additional charge applies, you will usually be required to settle the balance at the end of your health assessment unless we have a prior arrangement with your company. Please be assured we will only recommend extra tests or scans if clinically indicated.
Do you use CT scans at Preventicum?
No. CT scans are a completely different type of scan which also produce detailed images of inside the body but generally use high dose x-rays and so we prefer not to use these for health checks in asymptomatic individuals unless clinically indicated. Some studies have suggested an increased risk of harm from multiple CT scans so we prefer to use MRI.
What can I expect on the day?
What should I bring with me?
When you book your health assessment we will send you an email with all the information you will need for your assessment. We have Preventicum tracksuits and slippers for you to wear for the duration of your visit. You should bring trainers/running shoes for all health assessments as you may use a treadmill and our female clients may wish to bring a sports bra to change into. If you have undergone a health screen, medical examination or any other significant test in the last 3 years, please bring reports and/or results with you, including any significant x-ray or MRI films.
What if there’s something wrong?
If we discover a borderline or abnormal result in any examination, we will discuss these with you and you have several options. Firstly, we can send a copy of your report to your GP and you can discuss it with him/her before you decide what course of action to take. Secondly, we can arrange for any necessary further investigation or indeed treatment to take place via a referral to one of our network of specialists. We can organise this for you if you wish. Preventicum doctors and administrative staff will always be available on the telephone if you need any information or have any questions after your health assessment. We always recommend that you keep your own GP informed.
Do I need a referral letter to book a health assessment at Preventicum?
No, you can simply contact us and book your assessment without a referral.
How often should I have a Preventicum Health Assessment?
Our health assessments are very thorough and if your results are normal, we would advise an annual visit for those aged 50 and over, alternating between our Ultimate and Essential assessments. For those under 50 years old, we would suggest alternating between our Ultimate and Essential assessments every 18 months. We may suggest a repeat of a particular examination or blood test within a few months if results are borderline or abnormal.
What if I want to or need to cancel or reschedule my health assessment?
If you cancel or reschedule within 5 working days’ a cancellation fee will be charged equal to the full cost of the assessment. If you cancel or reschedule with 6 or more working days’ notice a full refund will be given.
Refunds will not be given if any part of your assessment, including MRI scanning, is not able to be carried out due to factors including but not limited to: claustrophobia, illness and pregnancy
*Clear working days, do not include the day of the appointment or the day on which notice is being given
Where is your clinic?
Our clinic is located in Central London’s Chancery Lane, please click here
for our contact information.
Is Preventicum registered with a regulatory body?
Yes, before the clinic opened, Preventicum secured registration with the Healthcare Commission, which is now called the Care Quality Commission.
Is my information confidential?
Our client’s privacy is very important to us. All your personal details, examination results and images are secure and will never be given out without your consent, including to your GP. Preventicum complies with the Data Protection Act.
Will my medical insurance cover the cost of the health assessment?
UK medical insurance policies do not generally cover the cost of preventive health assessments. Some European and US policies will cover part of the cost, but you will need to check these details with your insurer. If you have a referral letter for a specific examination or scan, you should check with your insurance company to see if they will cover the cost of this for you.
Do you have facilities for disabled clients?
Yes, Preventicum is suitable for wheelchair access. Please do let us know before your assessment if you require any assistance.
Is there an upper weight limit for any of your tests?
It is rare that we are unable to perform tests on clients due to size, however, clients heavier than 125Kg (20 stone) need to be aware that image quality and resolution may be significantly compromised in MRI and in abdominal and pelvic ultrasound images. Our Ultimate health assessment includes an exercise echocardiogram where we use a treadmill test and there is an upper weight limit of around 160kg (25 stone) for this test.
I am pregnant; can I still have a health assessment?
If you are or think you may be pregnant, please contact us before you book a health assessment including MRI scanning and ask to speak to one of our doctors. We would not normally carry out MRI scanning as part of a health assessment until after the pregnancy since these are elective procedures that can be postponed. There are no known risks of ultrasound in pregnancy and antenatal ultrasound is routinely used in the UK. We would not normally perform a smear test until after pregnancy even though there is no evidence that this is harmful.
I am breastfeeding; can I still have a health assessment?
Although there is no known reason not to have MRI scans while breastfeeding, we advise that you wait until 24 hours after your scan before continuing to breastfeed, due to the contrast agent Gadolinium.
Can I bring children into the clinic?
Preventicum is registered by the Quality Care Commission and our status does not permit anyone under the age of 18 within the clinic.
CAN I DO ANY MEDICAL LICENCE ASSESSMENTS WHILST AT PREVENTICUM
No. We are not able to complete any other documentation for clients in addition to our health assessment reports.
This includes but is not limited to forms for: sports medical certificates, gun licence, HGV licence, racing licence, aviation licence, oil and gas certification and occupational health work.
We are happy to send investigation results directly to clinicians involved in this with the consent of our clients, and recommend clinics in London to facilitate this.
AM I ABLE TO DO ANY GENETICS TESTING AT PREVENTICUM?
Yes. We offer the Color 30-gene Pan Cancer Panel test which looks at BRCA1, BRCA 2 where mutations can indicate increased risk of developing breast, melanoma, pancreatic, prostate and ovarian cancers; and an additional 28 genes which can also indicate risk in the areas of uterine, colorectal (bowel) and stomach cancer.
This test is offered at a cost of £495 which includes the test, counselling with a genetics consultant, and a post results consultation if required.
This test is accepted by the NHS if there are any abnormalities identified that require referral into NHS services. The turnaround time is 5 weeks.