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Mildly Elevated Liver Transaminase Levels: Causes and Evaluation - American Family ...

Dec 1, 2017 - Mild, asymptomatic elevations (less than five times the upper limit of normal) of alanine transaminase and aspartate transaminase levels are common in primary care. It is estimated that approximately 10% of the U.S. population has elevated transaminase levels. An approach based on the ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2017/1201/p709.html

Pleuritic Chest Pain: Sorting Through the Differential Diagnosis - American Family ...

Sep 1, 2017 - Pleuritic chest pain is characterized by sudden and intense sharp, stabbing, or burning pain in the chest when inhaling and exhaling. Pulmonary embolism is the most common serious cause, found in 5% to 21% of patients who present to an emergency department with pleuritic chest pain. A ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2017/0901/p306.html

Unexplained Lymphadenopathy: Evaluation and Differential Diagnosis - American Family ...

Dec 1, 2016 - Lymphadenopathy is benign and self-limited in most patients. Etiologies include malignancy, infection, and autoimmune disorders, as well as medications and iatrogenic causes. The history and physical examination alone usually identify the cause of lymphadenopathy. When the cause is ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2016/1201/p896.html

Ear Pain: Diagnosing Common and Uncommon Causes - American Family Physician

Jan 1, 2018 - Otalgia (ear pain) is a common presentation in the primary care setting with many diverse causes. Pain that originates from the ear is called primary otalgia, and the most common causes are otitis media and otitis externa. Examination of the ear usually reveals abnormal findings in ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2018/0101/p20.html

Dizziness: Approach to Evaluation and Management - American Family Physician

Feb 1, 2017 - Dizziness is a common yet imprecise symptom. It was traditionally divided into four categories based on the patient’s history: vertigo, presyncope, disequilibrium, and light-headedness. However, the distinction between these symptoms is of limited clinical usefulness. Patients have ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2017/0201/p154.html

Exercise Stress Testing: Indications and Common Questions - American Family Physician

Sep 1, 2017 - Exercise stress testing is a validated diagnostic test for coronary artery disease in symptomatic patients, and is used in the evaluation of patients with known cardiac disease. Testing of asymptomatic patients is generally not indicated. It may be performed in select deconditioned ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2017/0901/p293.html

Evaluation of Patients with Leukocytosis - American Family Physician

Dec 1, 2015 - An elevated white blood cell count has many potential etiologies, including malignant and nonmalignant causes. It is important to use age- and pregnancy-specific normal ranges for the white blood cell count. A repeat complete blood count with peripheral smear may provide helpful ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2015/1201/p1004.html

Common Skin Rashes in Children - American Family Physician

Aug 1, 2015 - Because childhood rashes may be difficult to differentiate by appearance alone, it is important to consider the entire clinical presentation to help make the appropriate diagnosis. Considerations include the appearance and location of the rash; the clinical course; and associated ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2015/0801/p211.html

Secondary Hypertension: Discovering the Underlying Cause - American Family Physician

Oct 1, 2017 - Most patients with hypertension have no clear etiology and are classified as having primary hypertension. However, 5% to 10% of these patients may have secondary hypertension, which indicates an underlying and potentially reversible cause. The prevalence and potential etiologies of ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2017/1001/p453.html

Evaluation of Neck Masses in Adults - American Family Physician

May 15, 2015 - Neck masses are often seen in clinical practice, and the family physician should be able to determine the etiology of a mass using organized, efficient diagnostic methods. The first goal is to determine if the mass is malignant or benign; malignancies are more common in adult smokers ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2015/0515/p698.html

Syncope: Evaluation and Differential Diagnosis - American Family Physician

Mar 1, 2017 - Syncope is an abrupt and transient loss of consciousness caused by cerebral hypoperfusion. It accounts for 1% to 1.5% of emergency department visits, resulting in high hospital admission rates and significant medical costs. Syncope is classified as neurally mediated, cardiac, and ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2017/0301/p303.html

Well-Child Visits for Infants and Young Children - American Family Physician

Sep 15, 2018 - The well-child visit allows for comprehensive assessment of a child and the opportunity for further evaluation if abnormalities are detected. A complete history during the well-child visit includes information about birth history; prior screenings; diet; sleep; dental care; and medical,...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2018/0915/p347.html

Diabetes Mellitus: Screening and Diagnosis - American Family Physician

Jan 15, 2016 - Diabetes mellitus is one of the most common diagnoses made by family physicians. Uncontrolled diabetes can lead to blindness, limb amputation, kidney failure, and vascular and heart disease. Screening patients before signs and symptoms develop leads to earlier diagnosis and treatment, ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2016/0115/p103.html

Hemolytic Anemia: Evaluation and Differential Diagnosis - American Family Physician

Sep 15, 2018 - Hemolytic anemia is defined by the premature destruction of red blood cells, and can be chronic or life-threatening. It should be part of the differential diagnosis for any normocytic or macrocytic anemia. Hemolysis may occur intravascularly, extravascularly in the reticuloendothelial ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2018/0915/p354.html

Urine Drug Tests: Ordering and Interpreting Results - American Family Physician

Jan 1, 2019 - Urine drug testing is an essential component of monitoring patients who are receiving long-term opioid therapy, and it has been suggested for patients receiving long-term benzodiazepine or stimulant therapy. Family physicians should be familiar with the characteristics and capabilities ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2019/0101/p33.html

Knee Pain in Adults and Adolescents: The Initial Evaluation - American Family Physician

Nov 1, 2018 - Knee pain affects approximately 25% of adults, and its prevalence has increased almost 65% over the past 20 years, accounting for nearly 4 million primary care visits annually. Initial evaluation should emphasize excluding urgent causes while considering the need for referral. Key ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2018/1101/p576.html

A Stepwise Approach to the Interpretation of Pulmonary Function Tests - American Family...

Mar 1, 2014 - Office-based pulmonary function testing, also known as spirometry, is a powerful tool for primary care physicians to diagnose and manage respiratory problems. An obstructive defect is indicated by a low forced expiratory volume in one second/forced vital capacity (FEV1/FVC) ratio, which...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2014/0301/p359.html

Depression: Screening and Diagnosis - American Family Physician

Oct 15, 2018 - Depression affects an estimated 8% of persons in the United States and accounts for more than $210 billion in health care costs annually. The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) and American Academy of Family Physicians recommend screening for depression in the general adult ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2018/1015/p508.html

Geriatric Assessment: An Office-Based Approach - American Family Physician

Jun 15, 2018 - Family physicians should be proficient in geriatric assessment because, as society ages, older adults will constitute an increasing proportion of patients. Geriatric assessment evaluates medical, social, and environmental factors that influence overall well-being, and addresses ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2018/0615/p776.html

Dysuria: Evaluation and Differential Diagnosis in Adults - American Family Physician

Nov 1, 2015 - The most common cause of acute dysuria is infection, especially cystitis. Other infectious causes include urethritis, sexually transmitted infections, and vaginitis. Noninfectious inflammatory causes include a foreign body in the urinary tract and dermatologic conditions. ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2015/1101/p778.html

Chronic Kidney Disease: Detection and Evaluation - American Family Physician

Dec 15, 2017 - Chronic kidney disease affects 47 million people in the United States and is associated with significant health care costs, morbidity, and mortality. Because this disease can silently progress to advanced stages, early detection is critical for initiating timely interventions. Multiple ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2017/1215/p776.html

Amenorrhea: A Systematic Approach to Diagnosis and Management - American Family Physician

Jul 1, 2019 - Menstrual patterns can be an indicator of overall health and self-perception of well-being. Primary amenorrhea, defined as the lifelong absence of menses, requires evaluation if menarche has not occurred by 15 years of age or three years post-thelarche. Secondary amenorrhea is ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2019/0701/p39.html

Evaluating Medical Decision-Making Capacity in Practice - American Family Physician

Jul 1, 2018 - Medical decision-making capacity is the ability of a patient to understand the benefits and risks of, and the alternatives to, a proposed treatment or intervention (including no treatment). Capacity is the basis of informed consent. Patients have medical decision-making capacity if they...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2018/0701/p40.html

Iron Deficiency and Other Types of Anemia in Infants and Children - American Family ...

Feb 15, 2016 - Anemia, defined as a hemoglobin level two standard deviations below the mean for age, is prevalent in infants and children worldwide. The evaluation of a child with anemia should begin with a thorough history and risk assessment. Characterizing the anemia as microcytic, normocytic, or ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2016/0215/p270.html

Evaluation of Elbow Pain in Adults - American Family Physician

Apr 15, 2014 - The elbow is a complex joint designed to withstand a wide range of dynamic exertional forces. The location and quality of elbow pain can generally localize the injury to one of the four anatomic regions: anterior, medial, lateral, or posterior. The history should include questions about...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2014/0415/p649.html

Chronic Cough: Evaluation and Management - American Family Physician

Nov 1, 2017 - Although chronic cough in adults (cough lasting longer than eight weeks) can be caused by many etiologies, four conditions account for most cases: upper airway cough syndrome, gastroesophageal reflux disease/laryngopharyngeal reflux disease, asthma, and nonasthmatic eosinophilic ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2017/1101/p575.html

Evaluation of the Patient with Hip Pain - American Family Physician

Jan 1, 2014 - Hip pain is a common and disabling condition that affects patients of all ages. The differential diagnosis of hip pain is broad, presenting a diagnostic challenge. Patients often express that their hip pain is localized to one of three anatomic regions: the anterior hip and groin, the ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2014/0101/p27.html

When to Order Contrast-Enhanced CT - American Family Physician

Sep 1, 2013 - Family physicians often must determine the most appropriate diagnostic tests to order for their patients. It is essential to know the types of contrast agents, their risks, contraindications, and common clinical scenarios in which contrast-enhanced computed tomography is appropriate. ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2013/0901/p312.html

A Comprehensive Newborn Exam: Part I. General, Head and Neck, Cardiopulmonary - ...

Sep 1, 2014 - A comprehensive newborn examination involves a systematic inspection. A Ballard score uses physical and neurologic characteristics to assess gestational age. Craniosynostosis is caused by premature fusion of the sutures, and 20% of children with this condition have a genetic mutation or...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2014/0901/p289.html

First Trimester Bleeding: Evaluation and Management - American Family Physician

Feb 1, 2019 - Approximately one-fourth of pregnant women will experience bleeding in the first trimester. The differential diagnosis includes threatened abortion, early pregnancy loss, and ectopic pregnancy. Pain and heavy bleeding are associated with an increased risk of early pregnancy loss. ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2019/0201/p166.html

The Adult Well-Male Examination - American Family Physician

Dec 15, 2018 - The adult well-male examination should provide evidence-based guidance toward the promotion of optimal health and well-being. The medical history should focus on tobacco and alcohol use, risk of human immunodeficiency virus and other sexually transmitted infections, and diet and ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2018/1215/p729.html

Differential Diagnosis of Polyarticular Arthritis - American Family Physician

Jul 1, 2015 - Polyarticular arthritis is commonly encountered in clinical settings and has multiple etiologies. The first step is to distinguish between true articular pain and nonarticular or periarticular conditions by recognizing clinical patterns through the history and physical examination. Once...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2015/0701/p35.html

Colorectal Cancer Screening and Surveillance - American Family Physician

Jan 15, 2015 - Colorectal cancer is the third most common cancer in men and women. The incidence and mortality rate of the disease have been declining over the past two decades because of early detection and treatment. Screening in persons at average risk should begin at 50 years of age; the U.S. ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2015/0115/p93.html

Evaluation of the Painful Eye - American Family Physician

Jun 15, 2016 - Eye problems constitute 2% to 3% of all primary care and emergency department visits. Common eye conditions that can cause eye pain are conjunctivitis, corneal abrasion, and hordeolum, and some of the most serious eye conditions include acute angle-closure glaucoma, orbital cellulitis, ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2016/0615/p991.html

Evaluation of Suspected Dementia - American Family Physician

Mar 15, 2018 - Dementia is a significant and costly health condition that affects 5 million adults and is the fifth leading cause of death among Americans older than 65 years. The prevalence of dementia will likely increase in the future because the number of Americans older than 65 years is expected ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2018/0315/p398.html

The Mental Status Examination - American Family Physician

Oct 15, 2016 - The mental status examination includes general observations made during the clinical encounter, as well as specific testing based on the needs of the patient and physician. Multiple cognitive functions may be tested, including attention, executive functioning, gnosia, language, memory, ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2016/1015/p635.html

Anemia in Older Adults - American Family Physician

Oct 1, 2018 - Anemia is associated with increased morbidity and mortality in older adults. Diagnostic cutoff values for defining anemia vary with age, sex, and possibly race. Anemia is often asymptomatic and discovered incidentally on laboratory testing. Patients may present with symptoms related to ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2018/1001/p437.html

Assessment of Asymptomatic Microscopic Hematuria in Adults - American Family Physician

Dec 1, 2013 - Although routine screening for bladder cancer is not recommended, microscopic hematuria is often incidentally discovered by primary care physicians. The American Urological Association has published an updated guideline for the management of asymptomatic microscopic hematuria, which is ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2013/1201/p747.html

Colorectal Cancer Screening and Surveillance in Individuals at Increased Risk - ...

Jan 15, 2018 - Individuals at increased risk of developing colorectal cancer include those with a personal or family history of advanced adenomas or colorectal cancer, a personal history of inflammatory bowel disease, or genetic polyposis syndromes. In general, these persons should undergo more ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2018/0115/p111.html

Audiometry Screening and Interpretation - American Family Physician

Jan 1, 2013 - The prevalence of hearing loss varies with age, affecting at least 25 percent of patients older than 50 years and more than 50 percent of those older than 80 years. Adolescents and young adults represent groups in which the prevalence of hearing loss is increasing and may therefore ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2013/0101/p41.html

Recurrent Abdominal Pain in Children - American Family Physician

Jun 15, 2018 - Recurrent abdominal pain (RAP) in children is defined as at least three episodes of pain that occur over at least three months and affect the child’s ability to perform normal activities. RAP is most often considered functional (nonorganic) abdominal pain, but an organic cause is found ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2018/0615/p785.html

Unintentional Weight Loss in Older Adults - American Family Physician

May 1, 2014 - Unintentional weight loss in persons older than 65 years is associated with increased morbidity and mortality. The most common etiologies are malignancy, nonmalignant gastrointestinal disease, and psychiatric conditions. Overall, nonmalignant diseases are more common causes of ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2014/0501/p718.html

Evaluation of Jaundice in Adults - American Family Physician

Feb 1, 2017 - Jaundice in adults can be an indicator of significant underlying disease. It is caused by elevated serum bilirubin levels in the unconjugated or conjugated form. The evaluation of jaundice relies on the history and physical examination. The initial laboratory evaluation should include ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2017/0201/p164.html

Colorectal Cancer Screening and Prevention - American Family Physician

May 15, 2018 - Colorectal cancer is a common cause of morbidity and mortality in the United States. Most colorectal cancers arise from preexisting adenomatous or serrated polyps. The incidence and mortality of colorectal cancer can be reduced with screening of average-risk adults 50 to 75 years of ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2018/0515/p658.html

Hearing Loss in Adults: Differential Diagnosis and Treatment - American Family Physician

Jul 15, 2019 - More than 30 million U.S. adults have hearing loss. This condition is underrecognized, and hearing aids and other hearing enhancement technologies are underused. Hearing loss is categorized as conductive, sensorineural, or mixed. Age-related sensorineural hearing loss (i.e., ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2019/0715/p98.html

Health Maintenance in School-Aged Children: Part I. History, Physical Examination, ...

Aug 15, 2019 - The goals of the health maintenance visit in school-aged children (five to 12 years) are promoting health, detecting disease, and counseling to prevent injury and future health problems. During the visit, the physician should address patient and parent/caregiver concerns and ask about ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2019/0815/p213.html

Acute Coronary Syndrome: Diagnostic Evaluation - American Family Physician

Feb 1, 2017 - Myocardial infarction (MI), a subset of acute coronary syndrome, is damage to the cardiac muscle as evidenced by elevated cardiac troponin levels in the setting of acute ischemia. Coronary artery disease is the leading cause of mortality in the United States. Chest pain is a common ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2017/0201/p170.html

Vitamin D Screening and Supplementation in Community-Dwelling Adults: Common Questions ...

Feb 15, 2018 - Measurement of vitamin D levels and supplementation with oral vitamin D have become commonplace, although clinical trials have not demonstrated health benefits. The usefulness of serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D levels to assess adequate exposure to vitamin D is hampered by variations in ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2018/0215/p254.html

Differential Diagnosis of the Swollen Red Eyelid - American Family Physician

Jul 15, 2015 - The swollen red eyelid is a common presentation in primary care. An understanding of the anatomy of the orbital region can guide care. Factors that guide diagnosis and urgency of care include acute vs. subacute onset of symptoms, presence or absence of pain, identifiable mass within the...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2015/0715/p106.html

The Preparticipation Sports Evaluation - American Family Physician

Sep 1, 2015 - The preparticipation physical evaluation is a commonly requested medical visit for amateur and professional athletes of all ages. The overarching goal is to maximize the health of athletes and their safe participation in sports. Although studies have not found that the preparticipation ...

American Family Physician : Article

https://www.aafp.org/afp/2015/0901/p371.html

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