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6 for Life

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. What is a disease risk assessment?

A. It’s a scientific tool that uses quantitative data on health risk factors (like age, weight, cholesterol and glucose levels, family history of disease, etc.) to calculate a person’s risk of getting certain diseases/conditions.

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Q. What is Life Line Screening’s 6 for Life?

A. Our disease risk assessment, called 6 for Life Health Assessment, is based on the most current scientific research, including the landmark Framingham Heart Study. It measures your risk of developing 6 chronic diseases—heart disease; stroke; type 2 diabetes; congestive heart failure; COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease) and lung cancer.

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Q. What makes Life Line Screening’s disease risk assessment different from the others available?

A. The most important difference is that it’s disease-specific. Beyond learning about key clinical numbers like cholesterol levels and Body Mass Index, you will learn how these numbers impact your specific disease risk. 6 for Life helps you identify where your greatest risks are and see where to focus your efforts. This helps you discover how to have the greatest impact on your health (for instance, by exercising, controlling your blood pressure, quitting smoking, etc.).

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How does this test differ from your other screenings?

Our vascular screenings show you where your vascular health stands today, whereas 6 for Life uses clinical data and lifestyle data to estimate your future disease risk. The vascular screenings and 6 for Life screening complement each other to provide a more comprehensive picture of where your health stands today. In addition, the 6 for Life assessment assesses your risk of all types of stroke, not just ischemic stroke.

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Don’t your other tests screen for stroke?

Yes, they show you where your vascular health stands today, based on the presence of plaque in your carotid arteries or having atrial fibrillation at the time of the screening. 6 for Life predicts your future risk of stroke and identifies what risk factors you can control.

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How are my risks calculated and how accurate are my results?

The clinical data gathered from your screening are run through a disease risk algorithm that assigns different point values to each risk factor. The risk factors were identified from the most current scientific studies on the disease states, as well as older studies like the landmark Framingham Heart Study*, which is the foundation for all heart disease risk assessments. Once you receive your own personal profile, you can then share your results with your physician.

*This is the largest study of its kind, now in its 50th year, involving more than 15,000 people

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Q. When will I receive my results?

A. You will receive your personal results report within 15 days of your screening.

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Q. Do I need a screening if I already get blood tests through my doctor?

A. This is more than just a blood screening. We measure your blood pressure, body mass index (based on height and weight), heart rate and waist circumference. Based on this data as well as information gathered from a brief personal and family health history questionnaire, we are able to assess your risk category for six common chronic diseases, and help you identify what you can do to control or modify your risk factors and improve your health.

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Q. Can I be screened if I’m adopted and don’t know my family health history?

A. Yes, your results will be based on the information we are able to gather. If there is some missing family history information, a results report can still be generated.

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Q. What is the age range for this screening?

A. The age range is 21 to 80 years of age. Clinical data outside of this range are not available to determine one’s risk for the onset of disease. Please keep in mind that the recommended age for our other vascular screenings is 40 and above.

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Q. How often should I be screened?

A. You should be screened annually if your clinical values (blood pressure, cholesterol, BMI, etc.) are not in the normal range and if you are at high risk for disease onset. You may want to get screened more often to track your progress if you are making lifestyle changes to reduce your disease risks. If your clinical values are normal and your family health history has not changed, we suggest being screened every three to five years.

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Q. What is involved in the screening?

A. The screening includes simple finger-stick blood tests for cholesterol and, glucose, blood pressure, body mass index (BMI, based on height and weight), waist circumference, and a brief questionnaire on personal and family health history as well as lifestyle factors.

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