General health check-ups: To check or not to check? A question of choosing wisely

Eur J Intern Med. 2023 Mar:109:1-3. doi: 10.1016/j.ejim.2022.12.021. Epub 2023 Jan 5.


In high-income countries, regular general health check-ups are part of the fabric of the health care systems. The hidden concept of general health check-ups, promoted for more than a century, is to identify diseases at a stage at which early intervention can be effective. However, there has been little evidence to support the benefits of such checkups. Choosing wisely (CW) campaigns may represent a tremendous opportunity to eventually shift patients and physicians away from the non-evidence based yet firmly entrenched practice of the general health check-up. As campaign leaders and members of the CW working group of the European Federation of Internal Medicine, we want to join the discussion by giving our perspective based on the best available evidence.

Keywords: Check-ups; Choosing wisely; Quality.

Publication types

  • Comment

MeSH terms

  • Health Status
  • Humans
  • Internal Medicine
  • Physicians*
  • Societies, Medical*