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Put Good Health on Your Schedule

Take time on your next birthday to celebrate another year of good health by scheduling your annual physical exam.

You exercise and eat healthfully because you know these habits can enhance your overall well-being. Making time for yearly screenings
is also essential for optimal health. This simple appointment could catch health conditions early, while they are still treatable.

“Annual physical exams can enhance the wellbeing of patients,” says Ami Shah, M.D., family medicine physician on the medical staff at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Plano. “People should take the opportunity to discuss any changes in their physical health as well as
other symptoms.”

Many tests -- such as blood pressure, cholesterol and weight -- may be done at your yearly physical exam.

Screenings for Men

Age 50

• Be screened for prostate cancer by age 50. If you have a family history of the disease, discuss being screened by age 45 with your physician.

• Undergo a colorectal cancer screening by age 50 or earlier if you have a family history of the disease.

Age 65

• Schedule an abdominal aortic aneurysm screening by age 65 if you have a history of smoking.

Age 70

• Osteoporosis screenings should take place by age 70.

Screenings for Women

Age 20

• Begin monthly breast self exams and have an annual clinical breast exam by age 20.

• Start cervical cancer screenings by age 21 and Pap smears every one to three years after that, depending on age and results.

Age 40

• Have a mammogram by age 40 and annually thereafter, unless you have a family history of breast cancer, which may indicate screenings are needed earlier.

Age 50

• Colorectal cancer screenings start at age 50 or earlier if you have a family history of the disease.

• Osteoporosis screenings should begin at age 50.

• Bone density screenings should begin two years after osteoporosis screenings.

(Summer 2011)

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