Prevention & Screening

Prevention
A nutritious diet, adequate sleep, regular exercise, no tobacco, and no excessive alcohol use comprise the mainstay of illness prevention.

No matter how healthy your lifestyle is, however, what you inherit from your parents may predispose you to certain conditions.

Screening
Doctors can detect a number of medical conditions in their early, treatable stages by doing screening tests. Some of these tests we will do as part of your annual check-up; some of these tests are more involved and require an appointment with a specialist.

You may need to have the following screening tests done earlier or more frequently than noted below if that condition is common or has occurred at unusually young ages in your family.

Condition

How we screen for it

Hypertension

Blood pressure measured at every visit

High cholesterol

Blood test

Diabetes

Blood test

Osteoporosis

Bone density scan, usually after age 65

   

Breast cancer

Breast exam at annual check-up
Mammogram every 1-2 years after age 40-50

Cervical cancer

Pap smear every 1-3 years by gynecologist

Colon cancer

Colonoscopy after age 50

Prostate cancer

Consider PSA blood test and prostate exam after age 50

Skin cancer

Skin exam at annual check-up

   

Several conditions are not common enough to screen for in everyone but should be screened for in people or families at high risk:

Abdominal aortic aneurysm                                                          

Ultrasound in men aged 65-75 who have ever smoked

Lung cancer

CT scan of lungs if you are 55-75 years old, have smoked heavily, and you have smoked within the past 15 years.

Genetic testing for certain conditions like familial cancer syndromes is another type of screening that is indicated for some people.