Disease Risk Assessment
What is 6 for Life
What screenings are required for 6 for Life
What diseases/conditions are included in 6 for Life
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.
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. These conditions are significantly impacted by the most common modifiable risk factors like high cholesterol, high blood pressure, smoking and excess weight.
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.). Our participants find the actionable knowledge motivating.
A. 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.
A. 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.
A. 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
A. You will receive your personal results report within 21 days of your screening.
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 6 common chronic diseases, and help you identify what you can do to control or modify your risk factors and improve your health.
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.
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.
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 3 to 5 years.
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.
A. BMI is a calculated value based on your height and weight. It estimates whether you are at a healthy weight. Being overweight puts strain on your heart and leads to serious health problems such as type 2 diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, and other serious conditions.
A. If you have abdominal obesity and most of your fat is around your waist rather than at your hips, you're at increased risk for coronary heart disease and type 2 diabetes. This risk goes up with a waist size that's greater than 35 inches for women or greater than 40 inches for men.
A. At Life Line Screening, we help you manage your cholesterol levels with the complete lipid panel, a simple finger-stick screening. This comprehensive screening measures 3 different kinds of lipids in the blood: HDL (“good” cholesterol), LDL (“bad” cholesterol), and triglycerides. In addition, the complete lipid panel also measures total cholesterol—the combined amount of these 3 lipids. Lipid levels are important factors in determining your overall heart health. Learn more.
A. We conduct a simple finger-stick blood screening to measure blood sugar levels following 8 hours of fasting. Learn more about screening for diabetes.
A. "High blood pressure, also known as HBP or hypertension, is a widely misunderstood medical condition. Healthy arteries are made of muscle and a semi-flexible tissue that stretches like elastic when the heart pumps blood through them. The more forcefully that blood pumps, the more the arteries stretch to allow blood to easily flow. Over time, if the force of the blood flow is often high, the tissue that makes up the walls of arteries gets stretched beyond its healthy limit." Read more at the American Heart Association website.
A. Coronary heart disease occurs when the arteries to the heart become clogged or narrowed due to atherosclerosis. This restricts blood flow and oxygen to the heart, both of which the heart needs to function properly.
A. Congestive heart failure (CHF), or heart failure, is a condition in which the heart cannot pump enough blood to the body's other organs. The heart keeps working but it does not work as efficiently as it should. As a result, the body’s needs for oxygen and nutrients are not met.
As blood moves through the heart and body less efficiently, pressure in the heart increases. The heart’s chambers stretch to hold more blood to pump throughout the body. Over time the heart muscle walls weaken and cannot pump as strongly. The kidneys often respond by causing the body to retain fluid or water and sodium (salt). The fluid builds up in the arms, legs, feet, ankles, lungs or other organs and causes swelling. The body becomes congested.
A. COPD is a serious lung disease that, over time, makes it hard to breathe. You may have heard COPD called other names, like emphysema or chronic bronchitis. In people who have COPD, the airways—tubes that carry air in and out of your lungs—are partially blocked, which makes it hard to get air in and out.
When COPD is severe, shortness of breath and other symptoms of COPD can get in the way of even the most basic tasks, such as doing light housework, taking a walk, and even washing and dressing.
A. Lung cancer starts when abnormal cells grow out of control in the lungs. Lung cancer and smoking often, but not always, go hand in hand.Most lung cancer starts in the lining of the bronchi, but it can also start in other parts of the lung.
Lung cancer often takes many years to develop. First, there may be pre-cancer changes in the lung. These changes are not a mass or tumor. They can't be seen on an x-ray and they don't cause symptoms.
At some point, lung cancer cells can break away and spread to other parts of the body in a process called metastasis. Lung cancer is a life-threatening disease because it often spreads this way before it is found. Learn more from the American Cancer Society.
A. Stroke occurs when blood flow to the brain is stopped, causing brain cells to die. Learn more about stroke.
A. Diabetes is a disease in which the body does not produce or properly use insulin. Insulin is a hormone that is needed to convert food into energy. Type 2 diabetes is the most common kind among adults. Over time, the high glucose (blood sugar) levels caused by diabetes can damage organs like the eyes and kidneys, and increase risk of stroke and heart disease. Learn more about diabetes.