Friday, July 16, 2010

Preventive Health Checks: When is a good time?

Sources: http://www.ahrq.gov, http://familydoctor.org

What is a "Preventive Service"?
A preventive service might be a test, or it might be advice from your doctor. Preventive check ups can include the following:
- Tests (also called screenings) to check your general health or the health of certain parts of your body
- Regular measurements of weight, cholesterol levels and blood pressure
- Advice about diet, exercise, tobacco, alcohol and drug use, stress and accident prevention
- Immunizations ("shots") for both children and adults
- Special tests at certain times in your life, such as during pregnancy and after age 50

What preventive services do women need?
Adult women should have their weight, blood pressure and cholesterol levels checked regularly. They should also have a Pap test at least every 3 years to screen for cervical cancer starting at age 21 or approximately 3 years after they have sex for the first time.
After the age of 50, women should have a mammogram every 2 years to screen for breast cancer. Women who have risk factors for breast cancer, such as a family history of breast cancer, may need to have mammograms more often or start having them sooner. After the age of 50, women should be tested for colorectal cancer.

What preventive services do men need?
Adult men should have their weight, cholesterol levels and blood pressure checked regularly.
Men older than 50 should be tested for colorectal cancer.

When is the right time to get a health check up?
The measures to watch out for depend on one's age, gender and risk level. We came across a good round up of the adult preventive care timeline and would like to share it with all our readers


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