Men’s Health Tune-Up Schedule: Medical Tests
Not one for annual checkups? OK, but you still need these medical tests and exams.
Develop a strong relationship with your doctor
Rick Kellerman, MD, is president of the American Academy of Family Physicians. He tells WebMD it’s more important to establish “a medical home” than to have a yearly checkup. By that, he means establishing a relationship with a “physician you know and trust and who knows your medical history.” This physician, he says, can then choose steps for prevention that meet your particular needs.
Kellerman says that patients who establish strong relationships with their doctors are more likely to receive appropriate medication when they need it. They are also less likely to be subjected to needless and costly medical test. Weida adds they’re also more likely to call or make an appointment when they do have a problem.
The most important consideration when choosing a primary care physician, Kellerman says, is how well you communicate with him or her. If you don’t feel comfortable talking to your doctor, choose a new one. Another important consideration is how accessible the doctor is. If you have an acute problem, will the doctor be able to see you that day?
Be on the lookout for specific health conditions
Though an annual checkup may not be required, men do need to be on the lookout for certain conditions as they age. The following list of “musts” and “maybes” distinguishes the medical tests that virtually all men should have from those that depend more on personal and family history.
To create the list, we used recommendations from the evidence-based guidelines of the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force. We also asked for recommendations from physicians consulted by WebMD. Your own doctor may recommend more -- or fewer - tests, depending on your medical history.