When you think about your family history, the first thought that may come to mind is your grandfather’s stories from being deployed or how your grandmother met her future partner. While it’s important to pass down personal family stories to keep the history alive, it is equally important to have knowledge of your family medical history.
A complete family medical record would include three generations of health information. This includes your parents, their parents, your aunts and/or uncles, their children and your siblings. It is crucial you are informed of key health concerns prevalent in your family – such as heart disease, diabetes and cancer types. The more aware you are of health concerns, the quicker you can seek preventative care if signs and symptoms begin to develop.
Common diseases or disorders that have a higher probability of being shared include heart disease, different types of cancers, high blood pressure and type 2 diabetes. The development of these conditions is greatly influenced by your genetic makeup and environmental influences. If you didn’t know, not only do you share a genetic makeup with your parents and immediate family members, you also tend to share similar lifestyle choices.
As you collect a familial health record, it is important to note at what age the conditions or diseases occurred or when signs and symptoms started. If it’s difficult to narrow down, an estimated age range is better than no information at all.
Still have questions about your family health history? Speak with your primary care provider about what conditions you may be at risk for based on your personal health information.
UofL Physicians – Primary Care offers multiple practice locations including both Family Medicine and Internal Medicine physician and providers. Family Medicine physicians are devoted to providing comprehensive health care for the individual and family across all ages, genders, diseases and parts of the body. Visit our website for more information and the services we provide.