What Does a Physical Exam Consist Of?

Aug 02, 2023
What Does a Physical Exam Consist Of?
Are you looking for a long-term investment in your health that offers achievable rewards? Schedule an annual physical. Learn more about what to expect during a physical exam and why they’re crucial to good health.

Annual physical exams take a comprehensive look at your current health status. These exams are essential to maintaining your overall well-being and detecting potential health issues before they become major concerns.

Dr. Sagi Jacob CohenDr. Nathan Alyesh, and their team at Calabasas Medicine Group in Calabasas, California, specialize in adult concierge medicine. The group is known for its comprehensive approach to health, including managing chronic illnesses like diabetes and other primary care services.

They’re also passionate about preventive care, including physical exams. Here’s what you can expect before, during, and after an annual physical exam.

Before the exam

If you’re a new patient to Calabasas Medicine Group, it's helpful to prepare for your first physical exam by gathering relevant medical information — about your medical history, current medications, previous test results, and any concerns or symptoms you may want to discuss with your provider. 

Organizing these details ahead of time ensures that you can make the most of your appointment and also provides accurate and comprehensive information during your visit, which factors into your treatment plan. 

If you’re an established patient, we have records, but we want to hear about what’s occurred since your last exam. Our concierge medicine program allows us ample time during a physical to review your questions or concerns thoroughly.

Your provider also checks your vaccination status during your medical history review and may recommend boosters to ensure your immunizations are current.

Your visit also includes an assessment of your blood pressure, heart rate, respiratory rate, and temperature. These measurements (vital signs) provide information about your overall health and help identify possible concerns.

During a physical exam

The physical exam portion of your visit includes a head-to-toe evaluation, separated into systems that typically include:

Head and neck

Your Calabasas Medicine provider checks your eyes, ears, nose, throat, and lymph nodes for signs of infection or other abnormalities.

Heart and lungs

Listening to your heart and lung sounds with a stethoscope allows your physician to detect irregularities such as murmurs, arrhythmia, wheezing, or other issues.


When palpating your abdomen, the provider assesses its size and monitors for tenderness or other abnormalities in internal organs such as your liver, spleen, or kidneys. He also uses a stethoscope to ensure your bowel sounds are normal, indicating good digestive health.


This portion of the exam involves checking your reflexes, coordination, and sensory responses to evaluate the nervous system.


The musculoskeletal exam includes a brief assessment of your joints, muscles, and spine to identify any limitations, abnormalities, or signs of inflammation.


During the skin exam, your provider looks for unusual moles, rashes, lesions, or signs of skin cancer.

Screening labs 

Depending on your age, medical history, and other risk factors, you may benefit from various screening labs, such as:

  • Blood tests to assess cholesterol levels, blood sugar, and other relevant health factors
  • Urine test to check for infections, kidney problems, and other conditions
  • Cancer screening such as colonoscopy, mammogram, or prostate exam
  • Biopsies of suspicious lumps or skin lesions

The results of these screening studies provide invaluable information in managing your overall health. For instance, an upward trend in blood sugar levels can indicate prediabetes; identifying this condition allows you to reverse course before you develop diabetes.

What to expect after a physical exam

An essential component of an annual physical at Calabasas Medicine Group is the discussion regarding your exam and test results.

Based on evaluation results, our doctors develop a personalized strategy to help prevent or effectively manage chronic illnesses. Your plan may include lifestyle modifications, dietary changes, exercise routines, and other preventive care measures.

Schedule an evaluation at Calabasas Medicine Group today to experience the benefits of a comprehensive physical exam. Call the office Monday through Friday, or request an appointment online anytime.