9 Screening Tests for Men
Are you one of those guys who can’t remember the last time you stepped foot in a doctor’s office?
Sure, maybe you’ve gotten in for something urgent, but what about scheduling an annual
exam or screening tests? Maybe you simply forget, think you already have healthy habits, or
insist that you “feel just fine.” Sorry, guys…. Not quite good enough.
Regular checkups and screening tests aren’t something you can afford to ignore. Baseline tests
can help your doctor know how your health is changing over time. Plus, silent killers such as
high blood pressure or high cholesterol can wreak havoc—and you wouldn’t have a clue without
Here’s a simple screening cheat sheet to make your life easier.
1. Abdominal aortic aneurysm. If you have ever smoked, get this ultrasound test one time
between ages 65 and 75. This test will show whether or not your largest artery (abdominal
aorta) is bulging. If it is, it may burst, putting you at risk for bleeding—and even death
2. Blood pressure. Starting at age 18:
· Get tested at least every 2 years if your blood pressure is lower than 120/80.3. Cholesterol. From age 20 to 34, get a regular cholesterol test if you are at increased risk for
· Get tested once a year if your blood pressure is between 120/80 and 139/89.
· Discuss treatment with your doctor if your blood pressure is 140/90 or higher.
heart disease. At age 35, get a regular cholesterol test. Ask your doctor how often you need to do
4. Colorectal cancer. Get screened for colorectal cancer from age 50 to 75. This screening
may include one or more tests, such as fecal occult blood testing, sigmoidoscopy, or colonoscopy.
Ask your doctor which test is best for you and how often you need it.
5. Depression. Ask your doctor about being screened for depression if over the past weeks:
· You have felt sad or hopeless6. Diabetes. Starting at age 18, get screened if your blood pressure is higher than 135/80 or if
· You have lost interest or pleasure in doing the things you normally enjoy
you take high blood pressure medicine.
7. Hepatitis C virus (HCV). Get screened once if you:
· Were born between 1945 and 1965.8. Lung cancer. Ask your doctor whether or not to be screened if you:
· Have ever injected drugs.
· Received a blood transfusion before 1992.
· Are between 55 and 80.9. Overweight and obesity. This is a test you can do yourself. Find your body mass index
· Have a 30 pack-year smoking history. (This is the number of packs smoked per day
times the number of years you smoked.)
· Smoke now or quit within the past 15 years.
(BMI) by entering your weight and height into an online BMI calculator.
Discuss with your doctor whether you are at increased risk for any other diseases. If so, you
may need other tests.
Be honest with your health care provider and me. Be sure to let us know what worries you—
whether it’s your weight, alcohol use, or challenges with anxiety. Think of us as your partners
in health. We can do a much better job of helping you if we fully understand your health
challenges and concerns.
Nothing herein constitutes medical advice, diagnosis or treatment, or is a substitute for professional
advice. You should always seek the advice of your physician or other medical professional if you
have questions or concerns about a medical condition.
1. AHRQ: Men: Stay Healthy at Any Age. Available at: http://www.ahrq.gov/patients-
consumers/patient-involvement/healthy-men/healthy-men.html Accessed 5-4-16.
2. OWH: Screening tests for men. Available at: http://www.womenshealth.gov/screening-
tests-and-vaccines/screening-tests-for-men/ Accessed 5-4-16.
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