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Health screening - men - ages 40 to 64

Definition

You should visit your health care provider regularly, even if you feel healthy. The purpose of these visits is to:

  • Screen for medical issues
  • Assess your risk of future medical problems
  • Encourage a healthy lifestyle
  • Update vaccinations
  • Help you get to know your provider in case of an illness

Alternative Names

Health maintenance visit - men - ages 40 to 64; Physical exam - men - ages 40 to 64; Yearly exam - men - ages 40 to 64; Checkup - men - ages 40 to 64; Men's health - ages 40 to 64; Preventive care - men - ages 40 to 64

Information

Even if you feel fine, you should still see your health care provider for regular checkups. These visits can help you avoid problems in the future. For example, the only way to find out if you have high blood pressure is to have it checked regularly. High blood sugar and high cholesterol levels also may not have any symptoms in the early stages. Simple blood tests can check for these conditions.

There are specific times when you should see your provider. Below are screening guidelines for men ages 40 to 64.

BLOOD PRESSURE SCREENING

  • Have your blood pressure checked every 2 years. If the top number (systolic number) is between 120 and 139 or the bottom number (diastolic number) is between 80 and 89 mm Hg then have it checked every year.
  • Watch for blood pressure screenings in your area. Ask your provider if you can stop in to have your blood pressure checked. Or check your blood pressure using the automated machines at local grocery stores and pharmacies.
  • If the top number is greater than 140 or the bottom number is greater than 90, schedule an appointment with your provider.
  • If you have diabetes, heart disease, kidney problems, or certain other conditions, you may need to have your blood pressure checked more often.

CHOLESTEROL SCREENING AND HEART DISEASE PREVENTION

  • If you are age 35 or older, you should be checked every 5 years.
  • If you have high cholesterol levels, diabetes, heart disease, kidney problems, or certain other conditions, you may need to be checked more often.
  • Some men should consider taking aspirin to prevent heart attacks. Ask your provider before you start aspirin because aspirin may increase your risk for bleeding.

DIABETES SCREENING

  • If you are age 45 or older, you should be screened every 3 years.
  • If you are overweight, ask your provider if you should be screened at a younger age. Asian Americans should be screened if their BMI is greater than 23.
  • If your blood pressure is above 135/80 mm Hg, or you have other risk factors for diabetes, your provider may test your blood sugar level for diabetes.

COLON CANCER SCREENING

If you are under age 50, you should be screened if you have a strong family history of colon cancer or polyps. Screening may also be considered if you have risk factors such as a history of inflammatory bowel disease or polyps.

If you are between ages 50 to 75, you should be screened for colorectal cancer. There are several screening tests available. Some common screening tests include:

  • A stool occult blood test done every year
  • Flexible sigmoidoscopy every 5 years along with a stool occult blood test every 3 years
  • Colonoscopy every 10 years

You may need a colonoscopy more often if you have risk factors for colon cancer, such as:

  • Ulcerative colitis
  • A personal or family history of colorectal cancer
  • A history of colorectal adenomas

DENTAL EXAM

  • Go to the dentist once or twice every year for an exam and cleaning. Your dentist will evaluate if you have a need for more frequent visits

EYE EXAM

Have an eye exam every 2 to 4 years ages 40 to 54 and every 1 to 3 years ages 55 to 64. Your provider may recommend more frequent eye exams if you have vision problems or glaucoma risk.

IMMUNIZATIONS

  • You should get a flu shot every year.
  • Your doctor may recommend other vaccinations if you have certain medical conditions, such as diabetes.
  • You should have a tetanus-diphtheria booster vaccination every 10 years. If you have not received a tetanus-diphtheria and acellular pertussis (Tdap) vaccine as one of your tetanus-diphtheria vaccines, you should have it once.
  • You may get a shingles or herpes zoster vaccination once after age 60.

OSTEOPOROSIS SCREENING

  • If you are between ages 50 to 70 and have risk factors for osteoporosis, you should discuss screening with your provider.
  • Risk factors can include long-term steroid use, low body weight, smoking, heavy alcohol use, having a fracture after age 50, or a family history of osteoporosis.

PHYSICAL EXAM

  • Your blood pressure should be checked at least every two years.
  • Your height, weight, and body mass index (BMI) should be checked at every exam.

During your exam, your provider may ask you about:

  • Depression
  • Diet and exercise
  • Alcohol and tobacco use
  • Safety, such as use of seat belts and smoke detectors

PROSTATE CANCER SCREENING

  • Most men age 50 or older should discuss screening for prostate cancer with their provider. African American men and those with a family history of prostate cancer in a first degree relative younger than age 65 should discuss screening at age 45.
  • The potential benefits of PSA testing as a routine screening test have not been shown to outweigh the harms of testing and treatment. If you choose to be tested, the PSA blood test is most often done every year.
  • Prostate examinations are no longer routinely done on men with no symptoms.

TESTICULAR EXAM

  • The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) now recommends against performing testicular self-exams. Doing testicular self-exams has been shown to have little to no benefit.

LUNG CANCER SCREENING

The USPSTF recommends annual screening for lung cancer with low-dose computed tomography (LDCT) in adults aged 55 to 80 years who:

  • Have a 30 pack-year smoking history AND
  • Currently smoke or have quit within the past 15 years

References

Advisory committee on immunization practices recommended immunization schedule for adults aged 19 years or older--United States, 2015. Kim DK, Bridges CB, Harriman KH; Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC); Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP); ACIP Adult Immunization Work Group. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 2015 Feb 6;64(4):91-2. PMID: 25654609 www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25654609.

American Cancer Society. American Cancer Society guidelines for the early detection of cancer. www.cancer.org/healthy/findcancerearly/cancerscreeningguidelines/american-cancer-society-guidelines-for-the-early-detection-of-cancer. Accessed July 24, 2015.

American Dental Association. Questions about going to the dentist. Available at: www.mouthhealthy.org/en/dental-care-concerns/questions-about-going-to-the-dentist. Accessed Jul 24, 2015.

American Gastroenterology Association. AGA institute guidelines for colonoscopy surveillance after cancer resection: clinical decision tool. Gastroenterology. 2014 May;146(5):1413-4. PubMed PMID: 24742563 www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24742563.

American Optometric Association. Comprehensive adult eye and vision examination. February 6, 2015. www.aoa.org/Documents/EBO/Adult%20Eye%20and%20Vision%20Examination%20Guideline%20Peer-Public%20Review%20Document.pdf. Accessed July 24, 2015.

American Urological Association Education and Research, Inc. PSA testing for the pretreatment staging and posttreatment management of prostate cancer: 2013 Revision of 2009 Best Practice Statement. Linthicum, MD: American Urological Association Education and Research, Inc. 2013. Available at: www.auanet.org/common/pdf/education/clinical-guidance/Prostate-Specific-Antigen.pdf. Accessed July 24, 2015.

Atkins D, Barton M. The periodic health examination. In: Goldman L, Schafer AI, eds. Goldman-Cecil Medicine. 25th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier Saunders; 2016:chap 15.

Cosman F, de Beur SJ, LeBoff MS, et al. Clinician's Guide to Prevention and Treatment of Osteoporosis. Osteoporos Int. 2014 Oct;25(10):2359-81. PMID: 25182228 www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25182228.

Handler J, et al. 2014 evidence-based guideline for the management of high blood pressure in adults: report from the panel members appointed to the Eighth Joint National Committee (JNC 8). JAMA. 2014 Feb 5;311(5):507-20. PMID: 24352797 www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24352797.

Helfand M, Carson S. Screening for Lipid Disorders in Adults: Selective Update of 2001 US Preventive Services Task Force Review. Rockville, MD: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (US); 2008 Jun. PMID: 20722146 www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20722146.

Levin B, Lieberman DA, McFarland B, Smith RA, Brooks D, Andrews KS, et al. Screening and surveillance for the early detection of colorectal cancer and adenomatous polyps, 2008: A joint guideline from the American Cancer Society, the U.S. Multi-Society Task Force on Colorectal Cancer, and the American College of Radiology. CA Cancer J Clin. 2008;58:130-60. PMID: 18384785 www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18384785.

Meschia JF, Bushnell C, Boden-Albala B et al. Guidelines for the primary prevention of stroke: a statement for healthcare professionals from the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association. Stroke. 2014 Dec;45(12):3754-832. PMID: 25355838 www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25355838.

National Comprehensive Cancer Network. NCCN Clinical Practice Guidelines in Oncology (NCCN Guidelines): Colorectal cancer screening. Version 3.2015. Available at: www.nccn.org/professionals/physician_gls/pdf/colon.pdf. Accessed July 24, 2015.

Peterson ED, Gaziano JM, Greenland P. Recommendations for treating hypertension: what are the right goals and purposes? JAMA. 2014 Feb 5;311(5):474-6. PMID: 24352710 www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24352710.

Rex DK, Johnson DA, Anderson JC, Schoenfeld PS, Burke CA, Inadomi JM; American College of Gastroenterology. American College of Gastroenterology guidelines for colorectal cancer screening 2009 [corrected]. Am J Gastroenterol. 2009;104:739-50. PMID: 19240699 www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19240699.

Ridker PM, Libby P, Burning JE. Risk Markers and the Primary Prevention of Cardiovascular Disease. In: Mann DL, Zipes DP, Libby P, Bonow RO, Braunwald E, eds. Braunwald's Heart Disease: A Textbook of Cardiovascular Medicine. 10th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier Saunders; 2015:chap 42.

Screening for lung cancer: U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recommendation statement. Moyer VA; U.S. Preventive Services Task Force. Ann Intern Med. 2014 Mar 4;160(5):330-8. PMID:24378917 www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24378917.

Screening for Prostate Cancer. U.S. Preventive Services Task Force Web site. Available at: www.uspreventiveservicestaskforce.org/Page/Document/UpdateSummaryFinal/prostate-cancer-screening?ds=1&s=ProstateAccessed. July 24, 2015.

Smith RA, Brooks D, Cokkinides V, Saslow D, Brawley OW. Cancer screening in the United States, 2013. A review of current American Cancer Society guidelines and issues in cancer screening. CA Cancer J Clin. 2013 Mar-Apr;63(2):88-105. PMID: 23378235 www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23378235.

Standards of medical care in diabetes--2015: summary of revisions. Diabetes Care. 2015 Jan;38 Suppl:S4. PMID: 25537706 www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25537706.

Stone NJ, Robinson J, Lichtenstein AH, Bairey Merz N, Blum CB, et al. 2013 ACC/AHA Guideline on the Treatment of Blood Cholesterol to Reduce Atherosclerotic Cardiovascular Risk in Adults. Circulation. 2014 Jun 24;129(25 Suppl 2):S1-S45. PMID: 24222016 www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24222016.

US Preventive Services TaskForce. Colorectal Cancer: Screening. 2008. www.uspreventiveservicestaskforce.org/Page/Topic/recommendation-summary/colorectal-cancer-screening. Accessed July 24, 2015.

U.S. Preventive Services Task Force. Screening for osteoporosis: recommendation statement. Am Fam Physician. 2011;83:1197-200. PMID: 21568254 www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21568254.

Whitlock EP, Lin J, Liles E, Beil T, Fu R, O'Connor E, Thompson RN, Cardenas T. Screening for Colorectal Cancer: An Updated Systematic Review [Internet]. Rockville, MD: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (US); 2008 Oct. PMID: 20722162 www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20722162.

Review Date:5/22/2015
Reviewed By:Laura J. Martin, MD, MPH, ABIM Board Certified in Internal Medicine and Hospice and Palliative Medicine, Atlanta, GA. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Isla Ogilvie, PhD, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.

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