A couple of months ago, I decided to go check out Sherman Health’s Healthy Heart Mobile Program that I’d heard so much about. After all, I’m a middle aged guy that’s not nearly as active as I once was and concern for being healthy is always something I should think about — at least my wife tells me so!
Now, I try to eat healthy — gone are the days when I could lunch everyday at a fast food joint or consume a six pack of beer at one sitting. In fact, my wife and I try to plan out all of our meals each week and strive for a low-fat, low-calorie diet. It seemed like having the quick round of tests through Sherman just made sense.
Making an appointment was easy and the technician taking my appointment went over a few easy instructions (fast the evening before, wear loose clothing, etc.) and was more than happy to answer my few, curious questions.
I came to The Centre just a couple of minutes before my appointment (I knew there was a bit of paperwork to complete — a simple health history) and then precisely at my appointment time, I was led into the examination room. My nurse, Tina, was very patient as I asked question after question (“Will this hurt?” “Why do I have to take my shoes off?” “It’s OK if I faint when you take a blood sample, right?”), though I had nothing really to fear as it turned out.
Tina took my blood pressure, weight, height and some other normal measurements. One curious test was when you stuck your feet into some sort of measuring device that pinched (***very*** gently) my heels a bit — I was informed this test actually measured my body mass ratio. When she was done measuring me, Tina explained what would happen next in another room I was to be taken to.
There, a small vial of blood was taken (I thankfully did not faint, though I kidded with the second technician that I’d try my hardest to stay conscious) and I was led into yet another room. Next, various veins and such in my body were examined with an ultrasound machine (think: examining a baby inside an expecting mother). Apparently, this monitored the blood flow in various parts of my body and gave them an idea of my risk of stroke. Pretty interesting. Yes, that jelly stuff you always see them squirting on ER or House is cold as all…well, you know.
Last, I was back in Tina’s room and took a sort of questionnaire that asked about my perception of my overall health, some of my eating habits, alcohol and tobacco usage, exercise regime, stress level and family health history. I kind of felt like I was back in school with all of the coloring-in of dots.
Finally, Tina came back in when I was done with my written survey, explained that she would tabulate the results, examine the blood test results and review the other things that had been done to me. She was happy to answer any final questions and promised to contact within a few days with the results. She sent me on my way with some literature and a nifty t-shirt. I was out of the office within 45 minutes (even with all my questioning).
A few days later — just as she promised — Tina called me to go over my test results. I’ll spare you all the details, but suffice it to say, I apparently need to make some life changes and adjustments. Each test was reviewed in detail and Tina was happy to give some simple diet, exercise and stress management suggestions. She said she’d mail a copy of the report to my primary care physician (which she did and he and I spoke about on my next visit) and also to my home address.
In all, the battery of tests were really painless, went quickly and were performed by real professionals — all of my questions were thoroughly answered, I never felt embarrassed and the attitude was light and friendly.
To learn more about the Healthy Heart Mobile, and to see when it might be in your area so you can schedule your appointment, click here.