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Important Reasons to Keep Up with Your Cancer Screening

Dr. Derek Koh

Head, Health Screening at Thomson Wellth Clinic

MBBS (Singapore), GDFM (Singapore)

Dr. Derek Koh practises preventive medicine through tailored health screenings & wellness programmes including the management of Andropause, Menopause and Obesity. He is also Board Certified in Anti-Ageing; has attained his Fellowship with the American Board of Anti-Ageing.

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Did you know that one in four people may develop cancer in their lifetime? While this sounds alarming, keeping up with your cancer screening is one of the best ways to detect it early and prevent it from progressing. 

Going for regular cancer screening is crucial if you have a family history of cancer and especially since the condition does not always present symptoms in its early stages. Early detection and treatment can also increase one’s survival rate – for instance, the 5-year survival rate of breast cancer is 90% if it is detected and treated in its first stage. 

Additionally, the most prevalent cancers affecting Singaporeans are colorectal and breast cancer which can be detected during a full health screening

Keep reading to find out the importance of keeping up with your cancer screenings in Singapore.

The Benefits of Going for Regular Cancer Screenings

The Benefits of Going for Regular Cancer Screenings-health screening singapore

  • Early treatment

Not only will your chances of getting cured be higher, but you will also be presented with more treatment options when the cancer is still in its early stages.

  • Fewer costs incurred on treatments

Cancers in their early stages also require less intensive intervention and fewer treatment sessions, which is why the costs incurred will usually be lower.

  • Peace of mind

That being said, going for a cancer screening will also provide you with greater peace of mind if all is well and nothing of concern has been found.

  • Get your health back on track

Do not let cancer go undetected until it is too late – early detection empowers you to get your health back on track as soon as possible so you can continue living life to the fullest.

  • Maintain good health

Going for a health screening, or specifically cancer screening, tells you your risk levels so you can start taking steps to better your health. Maintaining good health is like getting insurance – you are not just doing it for yourself, but also for your loved ones.

Common Cancer Screenings You Need to Make an Appointment for

Common Cancer Screenings You Need to Make an Appointment for-health screening singapore

  • Mammogram

A mammogram screening is currently the best way to detect breast cancer, even before symptoms appear. It is recommended to go for a mammogram screening once a year from age 40 to 49, and once every two years from age 50 and above.

Learn more: How Mammogram Screening for Breast Cancer Saves Lives

  • Breast ultrasound

It is usually done in conjunction with a mammogram screening if deemed necessary, to determine if a lump or cyst found is filled with fluid or a solid tumour.

  • Pap smear

Used to screen for cervical cancer, a pap smear involves removing cells from the surface of the cervix to check for abnormalities. It is a common test included in many health screenings in Singapore and is recommended for women above 25 years old who have ever had sex.

  • Pelvis ultrasound

There are two main methods to perform a pelvis ultrasound – transabdominal scan (TA) and transvaginal scan (TV). The former is used to examine the organs in the abdomen while the latter is used to examine the female reproductive organs.

  • Faecal occult blood test (FOBT)

FOBT is used to check stool samples and if blood is found, may indicate colon cancer or polyps in the colon or rectum. However, it is important to note that not all cancers or polyps bleed. The test is done once a year.

  • Prostate-Specific Antigen (PSA) test

The PSA test measures the level of protein and malignant cells in the prostate gland through a blood test. People with prostate cancer often have elevated PSA levels. Screening should be done yearly or every two years depending on each individual’s PSA level.

  • Prostate ultrasound

A prostate ultrasound is used to check the size, location and shape of the prostate gland to detect signs of cancer. It is usually the next step if a raised PSA level was found.

Book a Cancer Screening in Singapore

All health screenings under Thomson Medical’s Wellness Checkup provide ultrasound scans that can detect certain cancers. Alternatively, consider going for the Platinum Prestige Screenings that include CT and MRI scans, on top of ultrasound scans, which can help to detect and monitor cancer presence more accurately. The Platinum Prestige Screenings also screen for heart attack and stroke risk, offering you greater assurance. 

Get in touch with us to find out more!

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Urine and Stool Analysis

A urine sample is collected to examine substances such as glucose, protein, and red or white blood cells to provide information about kidney function & other urinary tract-related medical conditions. A stool analysis, on the other hand, checks for blood to provide information about digestive health including potential gastrointestinal bleeding.

Body Analysis Index (BIA)

A technique used to measure various parameters related to body composition, such as body fat percentage & lean body mass. It is non-invasive and involves passing a small electrical current through the body and measuring the resistance of different tissues to the current.