Review questions value of checkups

ANSWER: While some screening tests have been accepted into practice, there is less evidence for general health checks.

Cochrane reviewers searched for randomised trials of screening for more than one disease in adults, finding 16 suitable studies for review, but two had never published their full results. The 14 remaining trials involved 76,403 people in the intervention groups and 106,477 controls.

The most recent trial was 1999, with 11 dating from the 1960s and ’70s. Nine trials reported on overall mortality,