Intrigued by what the results of the questionnaire would have to say about me, I took them up on their offer. And here's what I have to say about it ...
The MyHealth Questionnaire can be found at the top right hand side of the page. Once you click on it you will be taken to the test page, and told that it will take you 10 minutes to complete. I think it took me a little longer than 10 minutes but I was a little unsure about some of the questions, so I had to go and take some measurements etc. to be able to fill those sections in. I'll talk a little more about that in a second.
The questionnaire was relatively simple to complete. There were 7 sections to complete, each with a series of questions to answer.
- About You:
This section asks for personal information such as gender, ethnicity, marital status and whether or not you have any children.
- Medical History:
This section asks if you have been diagnosed with any conditions such as angina, high blood pressure, schizophrenia or high cholesterol.
- Family History:
This section asks about the medical history of your first degree relatives (specifically biological parents, siblings and children).
This section asks about your day to day physical activity, and whether or not you smoke and/or drink.
This is the section that took me the longest to fill in! It asks things such as height, weight, waist and hip measurements. It also covers blood pressure, cholesterol and blood glucose. If I'm honest here, other than knowing that my blood pressure is normal (I have it checked every 3 months before I'm prescribed my contraceptive patches) I had no idea of these figures. Luckily, MyHealth gives a 'don't know' option. Phew.
This is the section where I think a lot of people would lie. I know I was tempted to on the odd question, but I didn't. This is most definitely the longest section to fill in and asks about things such as how many portions of fruit and veg do you generally eat per day? How often do you eat sugary foods? How often do you eat foods which are high in saturated fat? And how many cups of caffeinated tea do you drink per day on average?
Before Nathan and I moved in together I used to always drink decaffeinated tea, but I stopped as he won't pay the extra money for it when we go shopping. Since taking this questionnaire I feel that I should make more of an effort to switch back again. I need to put my foot down!!
The final section is dedicated to stress. It asks questions such as have you been to see your GP for any form of stress, anxiety or depression in the last 12 months? It asks if you've had any particular thoughts or feelings in the last 3 months (such as anxiety, low self-esteem, worrying about things and imagining the worst). This section is also a fairly long one, but easy to complete.
Once the questionnaire has been completed, a box comes up on the screen explaining that it's now time to get your Patient Q Score. This is where you are placed in a virtual queue of 100 people. If you score 1-20 you're placed in the risk zone. 21-60 earns you a place in the transformation zone. 61-90 will place you in the healthy zone and 91-100 will get you a place in the optimum zone.
You'll want to be placed as far back in the queue as possible because the closer to 100 you are, the healthier you are.
So, what result did I get. Let's take a look:
My score came out at 76 which I was really pleased about. I then chose to take a look at my lifestyle factors, which told me pretty much what I already knew: I need to improve parts of my diet. I also feel that I could be doing a lot more exercise. I mean, I push a buggy up two steep hills 2 to 3 times per day (which often leaves me out of breath) but I'm sure it's not the only bit of exercise I should be getting!
It also explained that I was drinking too much tea and that this could cause my blood sugar and blood pressure levels to fluctuate. It can also affect my mood and energy.
This evening I had a chat about my results with Dr Sarah Jarvis. She explained that my weight is in the optimum zone for my height and gender. She seemed happy with my score of 76 but did mention that lugging a buggy around isn't sufficient exercise! Oops.
I have set myself some personal goals on the www.patient.co.uk website. This is mainly to improve my diet. If I can follow through with that my target Patient Q Score is 85. I've had to be quite realistic about this (Christmas is coming, Lou will be getting fat) so I've given myself 6 months to reach it. I also signed up for regular progress e-mails, which includes tips on how I can improve. Fingers crossed I can reach my goal.
Overall, I think the website is absolutely fantastic, and as well as this questionnaire there are loads of fantastic articles about health related issues. It is super easy to use and the questions are simple enough for regular people such as you and I to understand. I think this can often make a big difference to the success or failure of a site.
Dr Sarah (who was absolutely lovely to speak to, I have to add) even has her own blog, which I found to be a great source of information.
I will definitely be returning!
Have you taken the MyHealth Questionnaire?
If so, I would love to hear your thoughts.