Healthy Horizons

Men's Health

Promoting healthy lifestyle habits involves more than eating healthy and regular exercise. In addition to a balanced diet and exercise, part of promoting healthy living is routine screenings for common health problems, many of which are preventable. Regular check-ups and age-appropriate screenings can improve health status and reduce chances of developing certain health conditions. The following information lists general recommended screenings for men according to their age group, which are derived from clinical guidelines. These should be reviewed and discussed with your physician to determine which types of screenings and how often they should be done based on what is appropriate for you.

MEN AGES 20-39 ~ View Section Statements

General Health

  • Physical Exam every year or as recommended by your primary care physician.
  • Thyroid function test every 5 years (beginning at age 35).

Cardiovascular Health

  • Blood pressure every year.
  • Complete cholesterol panel every 1-5 years depending on individual results - If taking medication for high cholesterol, levels will be checked more frequently.

Reproductive System Health

  • Sexually Transmitted Disease (STD) testing: Both partners should be tested before starting sexual relationship; sexually active adults should be screened for syphilis, Chlamydia, and Gonorrhea.
  • Perform a monthly testicular self-exam.

Skin Health

  • Self-skin exams monthly - look for development of or changes in moles and freckles.
  • Physician skin exam every 3 years.
  • Use sunscreen that provides UVA and UVB protection with SPF of at least 30.

Vaccines

  • Influenza (flu) vaccine every year, unless allergic to eggs or history of a severe reaction to the flu vaccine.
  • Tetanus - Diphtheria booster vaccine every 10 years.
  • Meningococcal vaccine for college freshman planning on living in dormitories.

Dental Health

  • Dental exams every 6 months.
  • Oral self-exams monthly - examine gums, tongue and insides of cheeks for spots.

Ear and Eye Health

  • Vision exam - based on results, physician will decide need for follow-up exam.
  • Hearing exam every 10 years (starting at age 18).

MEN AGES 40-49 ~ View Section Statements

General Health

  • Physical Exam every year or as recommended by your primary care physician.
  • Thyroid function test every 5 years.

Cardiovascular Health

  • Blood pressure every year.
  • Complete cholesterol panel every 1-5 years. If taking medication for high cholesterol, levels will be checked more frequently.

Diabetes Screening

  • Beginning at age 45 (in the absence of risk factors - your physician can help you determine your risk for developing diabetes). You should have the screening every 3 years or every year if risk factors are present. Click here (http://www.diabetes.org/risk-test.jsp) to assess your risk for developing diabetes.

Reproductive System Health

  • Sexually Transmitted Disease (STD) testing: Both partners should be tested before starting sexual relationship; sexually active adults should be screened for syphilis, Chlamydia, and Gonorrhea.

Prostate Screening

  • For men who are at high risk of prostate cancer screening should begin at age 45.
  • Men at high risk are African Americans or men with a family history of prostate cancer in a first degree relative who was diagnosed before age 65
  • Tests include the Digital Rectal Exam (DRE) and blood tests for Prostate Specific Antigens (PSA)

Skin Health

  • Self-skin exams monthly - look for development of or changes in moles and freckles.
  • Physician skin exam every year.
  • Use sunscreen that provides UVA and UVB protection with SPF of at least 30.

Vaccines

  • Influenza (flu) vaccine every year, unless allergic to eggs or history a of severe reaction to the flu vaccine.
  • Tetanus - Diphtheria booster vaccine every 10 years.

Dental Health

  • Dental exams every 6 months.
  • Oral exams monthly - examine gums, tongue and insides of cheeks for spots.

Ear and Eye Health

  • Vision exam every 2-4 years
  • Hearing exam every 10 years

MEN AGE 50+ ~ View Section Statements

General Health

  • Physical Exam every year; review of overall health status
  • Thyroid function test every 5 years

Cardiovascular Health

  • To reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke
  • Blood pressure every year
  • Complete cholesterol panel every 1-5 years. If taking medication for high cholesterol, levels will be checked more frequently.

Diabetes Screening

  • Every 3 years or every year if risk factors are present - your physician can help you determine your risk for developing diabetes. Click here ( http://www.diabetes.org/risk-test.jsp ) to assess your risk for developing diabetes.

Reproductive System Health

  • Sexually Transmitted Disease (STD) testing: Both partners should be tested before starting a sexual relationship; sexually active adults should be screened for syphilis, Chlamydia, and Gonorrhea.

Prostate Screening

  • Digital Rectal Exam (DRE) and blood tests for Prostate Specific Antigens (PSA) are included in routine annual physicals for men 50 years of age or older.

Colorectal Health

  • Hemoccult stool test yearly - Screens the stool for small amounts of blood (too small to be seen) that could be the first signs of polyps or colon cancer
  • Colonoscopy every 10 years

Skin Health

  • Self-skin exams monthly - look for development of or changes in moles and freckles
  • Physician skin exam every year
  • Use sunscreen that provides UVA and UVB protection with SPF of at least 30

Vaccines

  • Influenza (flu) vaccine every year, unless allergic to eggs or history of severe reaction
  • Tetanus - Diphtheria booster vaccine every 10 years
  • Pneumonia vaccine one time beginning at age 65.
  • Herpes Zoster vaccine (to prevent Shingles) one time beginning at age 60.

Dental Health

  • Dental exams every 6 months
  • Oral exams monthly - examine gums, tongue and insides of cheeks for spots.

Ear and Eye Health

  • Vision exam every 2-4 years
  • Hearing exam every 10 years

REFERENCES ~ View Section Statements

American Diabetes Association. Standards of medical care in diabetes - 2008. Diabetes Care. 2008;31:S12-54.

Executive summary of the third report of the national cholesterol education program (NCEP) expert panel on detection, evaluation, and treatment of high blood cholesterol in adults (adult treatment panel III). JAMA . 2001;285:2486-2497.

Chobanian AV, Bakris GL, Black HR, Cushman WC, Green LA, Izzo JL, Jones DW, et al. Seventh report of the Joint National Committee on prevention, detection, evaluation, and treatment of high blood pressure. Hypertension. 2003;42:1206-1252.

Can Prostate Cancer be Found Early? American Cancer Society Website.  http://www.cancer.org/Cancer/ProstateCancer/DetailedGuide/prostate-cancer-detection. Updated June 14, 2007. Accessed April 6, 2008. Ladenson PW, Singer PA, Ain KB, et al. American Thyroid Association Guidelines for Detection of Thyroid Dysfunction. Arch Intern Med. 2000;160:1573-1575.