Many men find a trip to the doctor an intimidating prospect. But no matter how unpleasant they seem, doctor visits and medical tests may save your life. To help you prepare for your next visit, here is a list of some screenings recommended by the Men’s Health Network.
1. Physical Exam. This checks your overall health. You should have one done every three years until age 39, every two years until age 50, and every year after that.
2. Blood Pressure Screening. This screening checks for high blood pressure. Have it done every year.
3. EKG (Electrocardiogram). An EKG checks for abnormalities in heart rhythm. Start having them done at age 30, every four years until age 50, and every three years after that.
4. Rectal Exam. This exam screens for colon and prostate cancer, as well as for hemorrhoids and STDs. Have it done every year.
5. Colonoscopy. This screens for colon cancer. Have one done every three to four years after the age of 50.
6. Blood Tests and Urinalysis. These tests check cholesterol levels and screens for diabetes or kidney dysfunction. Have this done every three years until age 39, every two years until age 50, and every year after that.
7. Self-exam of the Testes, Skin, Mouth, and Breasts. Check your body for precancerous lumps or moles. Do it monthly at any age.
8. Testosterone Screening. This screening checks for sexual dysfunction. After age 40, it should be done with your doctor’s recommendation.
9. PSA Blood Test. This test checks for abnormalities of the prostate. Have it done every year after age 50, or starting at age 40. It should be done earlier for African-American men or men with a family history of prostate cancer.
Be sure to talk with your doctor about additional recommended screenings, particularly if you may be at high risk or have a family history of illness or disease.