The Importance of Early Detection

3 minute read | Posted by David Melchor on Jun 6, 2022 10:46:32 AM
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One of the things that makes me feel proud and grateful about Pravan is the number of people we have helped through our preventative primary care approach. When we founded Pravan, we wanted it to focus on prevention since most physicians and clinics practice reactive medicine nowadays. By reactive, I mean that people only go to the doctor when they feel something is wrong, and unfortunately, it could be too late.

At Pravan, we encourage people to join when they're healthy and enjoying life. The idea is to catch things early and take action before it becomes a bigger problem, a chronic condition, or disease. Of course, our physicians are trained to manage a wide range of chronic diseases, but what they love is focusing on prevention and early detection.


I can't tell you how many stories I hear about healthy members who come for their initial medical evaluation or their annual examination and something unexpected comes up. I want to share with you a few cases that confirm that Pravan's preventative approach is effective and in some cases saves lives. The following cases have been discussed internally with respect to HIPAA privacy rules to protect PHI (Patient Health Information).

Case 1

About 1 in 8 U.S. women (about 13%) will develop invasive breast cancer over the course of their lifetime.

A few months ago, a female in her mid-forties came in for a routine check-up, and our physician detected an abnormal cyst in one of her breasts. Her Pravan doctor quickly prepared a referral to an imaging specialist within our network. When the interpreted results came in, our team assisted her with biopsy coordination, as recommended by the radiologist. In a matter of days, the biopsy results came back positive. But the good news was that our primary care team detected the encapsulated breast tumor early, so the specialist removed it successfully without significant complications. The patient is now doing fine and is now under strict follow-up protocol to monitor the evolution of the condition. If it hadn't been for the fast approach to managing a small cyst, the patient's condition could've aggravated since most malignant tumors spread quickly.

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Case 2

About 1 in 8 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer during their lifetime.

Another case to highlight was a healthy male in his sixties who came to Pravan for a routine annual exam. We had already coordinated lab work for him, so once he got to his appointment with his primary care physician, we notified him of elevated PSA (Prostate-Specific Antigen). Our doctor rapidly took action by checking the prostate only to confirm prostate enlargement and proceeded to order an MRI. Our team coordinated the MRI, and from then on things moved forward very quickly until the diagnosis of early prostate cancer was done. Our member received prompt Urologic and Oncologic care and is now fully in remission.


Case 3

The incidence of thyroid cancer has increased dramatically during the past three decades and it is now the fastest growing cancer in women.

The third case was a young female in her late twenties who came for a regular appointment with her Pravan primary care physician. The patient had come with thyroid lab results within a normal range, but the doctor felt something unusual in her neck during her evaluation. The Pravan physician performed an exploratory ultrasound, and it showed a suspicious cyst. Afterward, the doctor sent an expedited order for further imaging and a biopsy. The results were positive for an aggressive tumor but fortunately, the patient was able to get surgery and start treatment quickly. With the early diagnosis and prompt response from her team, she increased her chances of successfully beating her cancer. Time is always of the essence in these cases, and early detection is vital to acquire treatment while it’s still within reach.

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Case 4

About 100,000 new melanomas will be diagnosed this year in the United States.

The last case I'll share was when our physician was able to identify a strange-looking mole that had an irregular shape and an unusual color during one of our member's initial evaluations. Our care coordination team managed to book a fast-track appointment with our concierge dermatologist. After further examination and a biopsy, the final diagnosis was melanoma. Melanoma is a form of skin cancer that can be fatal, so early detection is critical to avoid metastasis. This case hit home since I had recently lost a dear friend to an already aggressive melanoma diagnosis.

Our physicians always emphasize to patients how important it is to get full-body skin checks regularly. But when it comes to health care, it's all about teamwork, so patients have to prioritize these appointments.


Pravan’s preventative primary care approach.

These are just a few examples of many cases we have seen at Pravan over the years. Our responsibility is to raise awareness and provide better context as to why regular check-ups and early detection are essential.

Most concierge clinics are there for you when you get sick and need help. Still, not all of them have protocols to perform a comprehensive medical evaluation when you first join the practice. These medical exams allow our medical team to have a baseline to compare health improvement from year to year. 

Our approach to medicine is not only focused on prevention but it's also tailored to attend to specific patient needs. Because of our ability to personalize care, our doctors require some members to have follow-up evaluations frequently. The bottom line is that preventative medicine and early detection are critical strategies to keep yourself healthy under any circumstance. 

The examples listed above are mostly related to cancer, but prevention is crucial in many highly prevalent chronic conditions, from obesity to diabetes and heart disease. Our team at Pravan keeps updated with all the recommended screening and diagnostic tests for the most prevalent conditions to help our members be the best and healthiest version of themselves.

Your health is your greatest wealth. Prioritize your appointments and follow your Pravan doctor's advice. Everything else is secondary.


For more information on our approach to medicine and our services click below.

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Topics: prevention, care coordination, concierge, quality time, early detection

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