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Physical Exam

Patricia G. Gao, MD

Primary Care Physician located in Glen Burnie, MD

A physical exam, also referred to as an annual wellness visit, is an appointment you make when you’re well. During a physical exam, Dr. Patricia G. Gao conducts preventive measurements based on your age, sex, and medical conditions. Dr. Gao serves patients at her private practice in Glen Burnie, Maryland.

Physical Exam Q&A

What items should you bring to a physical exam?

Bringing the correct items to your physical exam is crucial. Having the right information on hand can help Dr. Gao make any needed diagnoses and create a customized, preventive plan for you. Dr. Gao may ask you bring the following items to your appointment:

  • A list of current medications, vitamins, and herbal supplements
  • A list of things you’re allergic to
  • Results of previous tests and lab work
  • Your medical and surgical history

You should also write down any symptoms you’re experiencing and any questions you have to share with Dr. Gao at your appointment.

What lifestyle behaviors are discussed during a physical exam?

During your annual wellness visit, Dr. Gao asks you about your lifestyle behaviors necessary for preventive care, including whether or not you smoke. If you’re a smoker, you’ll need to discuss the amount of smoking you do each day. Alcohol consumption is another commonly discussed topic during physical exams. Besides alcohol consumption, you’ll need to provide Dr. Gao with other crucial details about your diet such as whether you prepare most of your meals at home or dine at fast food restaurants multiple times each week. During your physical exam, Dr. Gao may also talk with you about your exercise habits.

What actions are performed during a physical exam?

Following clinical guidelines, Dr. Gao emphasizes prevention during physical exams. At your annual wellness visit, Dr. Gao screens you for signs of medical problems requiring attention. She checks your vital signs including blood pressure, heart rate, respiration rate, and temperature. Dr. Gao may also listen to your heart and lungs with a stethoscope. A heart exam can detect an irregular heartbeat, a heart murmur, or other signs of heart disease. During a lung exam, she listens for signs of lung and heart disease such as wheezes, crackles, or diminished breath sounds. She may perform an abdominal exam to detect the presence of abdominal fluid, liver problems, or bowel issues. Depending on your age, gender, and medical conditions, Dr. Gao may request lab tests to determine your cholesterol and blood sugar levels and recommend appropriate cancer screening tests or vaccinations to help you maintain your health.

To start receiving the preventive care you need, schedule an appointment with Dr. Gao at her private practice today.


We accept the majority of health insurance plans. Please contact our office if you do not see yours listed or have any other questions.

Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield
Assurant Health
Bankers Life and Casualty Company
Blue Cross Blue Shield
Blue Cross Blue Shield Choice
Blue Cross Blue Shield Federal
Blue Cross Blue Shield Horizon
Care Improvement Plus