Many people believe that they need to undergo health check-ups only when a complication occurs. Diabetes can cause complications by damaging the kidney, eyes, heart and the peripheral nerves. By the time complications like heart attack, kidney failure and loss of vision completely surface, it becomes difficult to reverse the condition to its normal state. So screening for complications is very important in people with Diabetes, especially in people with uncontrolled blood sugar levels to prevent further damage.If people undergo screening and problem is detected in the pre-complication stage, then timely treatment may be highly effective. For example, in people who have microalbuminuria, drug therapy can prevent kidney failure if detected in the early stage. So, screening is important to detect complication at an early stage and prevent its further progression.Screening test checklistScreening tests for Diabetes complications include blood tests, urine test, foot examination, eye check-up and heart-related tests. These tests should be repeated annually, but may require frequent monitoring in people with pre-existing complications. Screening tests help detect complications early which can then be managed accordingly.ECG and blood pressure monitoring ECG (Electrocardiography) is done to find out any heart rate and rhythm related problems. It also detects decreased blood supply to muscles of the heart. Heart attack is more common in people with Diabetes and so regular screening for changes in the heart health is important.Blood pressure is measured by a doctor with an instrument called sphygmomanometer (BP measuring apparatus) to detect hypertension.Hypertension is a blood pressure measurement in which the systolic (upper) blood pressure is at or above 140 and the diastolic (lower) blood pressure is at or above 90 mm Hg.Serum creatinine and estimated GFRA serum creatinine test measures the level of creatinine in the blood. Creatinine is a waste product that forms when creatine, a compound found in the muscles, breaks down. Creatinine levels in the blood can provide information to your doctor about how well your kidneys are functioning.Leakage of protein (albumin) in urine is an important test too, covered in another article of this issue.Lipid profileLipid profile is a blood test to measure the levels of different lipids in your blood. It includes total cholesterol, LDL (bad), HDL (good) cholesterol and triglycerides. Ideally, this test should be done in a fasting state (i.e. without any food for 8 hours) in the morning hours. Abnormal lipids in the blood can get deposited in the blood vessels and can cause obstruction to blood flow. Abnormal lipid levels can be treated with medications to prevent complications like heart disease. .Eye check-upAn ophthalmologist will examine the retina of your eye with the help of an instrument called ophthalmoscope, to detect any Diabetes-related changes. Diabetic retinopathy is a common complication of uncontrolled Diabetes and can lead to loss of vision. This can be prevented if detected at an early stage. In people with Diabetes, this screening should be done at least once a year but more frequent check-ups are required in people who have retinopathy.Comprehensive foot examinationFoot examination is done to look for nerve damage and blood circulation problems in the feet. It includes testing to check blood vessels with tests of sensation and vibration perception. Uncontrolled Diabetes can cause loss of sensation in the feet and abnormal circulation of blood which can lead to diabetic neuropathy and peripheral vascular disease (PVD) of foot. This leads to a high risk of trauma leading to non-healing ulcers and amputations. Test should be performed at every visit in people who have a loss of sensation, foot ulcers and previous amputations..To concludeMost of the complications of Diabetes, if detected at a pre-complication stage, can be treated with modern treatment modalities, so screening is very important. By getting checked every year, you'll be in a position to beat the threat of complications.