The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force has come up with a set of recommended screening tests older men should have.
Use this list as a general guide and an opportunity to discuss these issues with your personal doctor.
- Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm. If you are between the ages of 65 and 75 and have ever been a smoker, talk with your doctor about being screened.
- Colorectal Cancer. Definitely. Your doctor can advise which test is right for you.
- Depression. If you have felt sad or hopeless over the last 2 weeks or have felt little interest or pleasure in doing things, talk to your doctor about being screened for depression.
- High Blood Pressure. Have your blood pressure checked at least every two years. High blood pressure is 140/90 or higher.
- Diabetes. If you have high blood pressure, have a diabetes blood test.
- Cholesterol. Have your cholesterol checked regularly.
- HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases. Some doctors think everyone should be tested for HIV and other STD’s at least once. At the very least, talk with your doctor about HIV screening if any of these apply:
- You have had unprotected sex with anyone — male or female — who isn’t your regular partner.
- You have used or now use injection drugs.
- You exchange sex for money or drugs or have sex partners who do.
- You have past or present sex partners who are HIV-infected or use injection drugs.
- You are being treated for a sexually transmitted disease.
- You had a blood transfusion between 1978 and 1985
- Body weight. Have your body mass index (BMI) calculated to screen for obesity. (BMI is a measure of body fat based on height and weight.) There’s a handy online calculator at: http://www.nhlbisupport.com/bmi/.
- Other conditions. Some of the other conditions which may warrant regular screening include: glaucoma, skin cancer, and prostate enlargement. For your prostate, you’ll test your PSA scores (levels of prostate specific antigen). Based on your past medical history and a possible family predilection, there may be other diseases to watch out for too.