Take charge of your health and your body will thank you for it! Regular check-ups are important because they help find problems before they start. And finding problems early improves your chances for treatment and a cure. As you get older, health screenings become a regular part of your check-ups. They help you be proactive and spot potential problems early. Let's review some of important health screenings for everyone over 40.
Colonoscopy: This test screens for ulcers, colon polyps, tumors and areas of bleeding in your intestine. The National Institute for Health (NIH) recommends this test for everyone age 50 or older. Frequency of testing after the first screen will be based on the test results and your family history. Learn more: Three simple questions to ask before your colonoscopy
Mammogram: A mammogram is the best tool available for early detection and diagnosis of breast cancer. The NIH recommends screenings for women start at age 40, depending on risk and health history. Learn more: Common questions about mammograms.
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Bone density scan: A bone density test screens for osteoporosis which is common as we age. NIH recommendations call for this test for both men and women starting at age 65 or earlier if you experience a fracture or have a higher risk identified by your family history. Logansport Memorial offers the newest technology available in bone density scans with its GE Lunar DEXA. Learn more about this key step in treating osteoporosis.
Prostate exam: Prostate exams are often one of the best ways to diagnose rectal tumors, prostate cancer and other disorders that are most treatable with identified early. Medical professionals recommend men have their first screen between the ages of 40 and 50. Frequency after that will depend on your risk level.
Heart scan: Anyone over the age of 40 with the following risk factors should talk to their doctor about a heart scan: family history of heart disease or stroke, smoking, diabetes, obesity or high blood pressure. Heart scans can identify heart disease and help you make lifestyle changes that improve your heart health.
More health screenings
As part of your regular check-up you should also have your blood pressure monitored. This simple test helps identify changes from year to year and can identify a potential problem before it gets serious. you should also talk to your doctor about blood tests to screen for glucose, lipids, and vitamin and mineral levels.