Regular Screenings: A Healthy Habit

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Published on July 27, 2020

Regular Screenings: A Healthy Habit

Photo of a doctor checking a patient's heart with a stethoscopeBe a proactive participant in your own health and wellness. It’s important not to delay simple tests and physical examinations with your doctor. They can detect the early onset of some serious medical conditions like heart disease, diabetes, high cholesterol and cancer.

Here’s a list of health screenings and their recommended intervals:

Annual Wellness Visit (Physical) – Men and women should have an annual wellness visit, also known as a physical, with his or her primary care physician. All people of all ages should have a physical every year.

Breast Cancer Screening – Women should begin screening for breast cancer annually at age 40. This type of exam is called a mammogram.

Cervical Cancer Screening – Women, ages 21 to 64, should have a cervical cancer screening every three to five years per your doctor’s recommendation. The screening exam for cervical cancer is called a pap smear.

Colorectal Cancer Screening – Both men and women, beginning at age 50, should have a colorectal cancer screening every 10 years. If there is a history of colorectal cancer in your family, you may need to be screened earlier and more frequently. The preferred screening method for colorectal cancer is called a colonoscopy and is the only screening method that may prevent cancer.

Lung Cancer Screening – Both men and women, ages 55 to 80, should get a lung cancer screening every year if you are a current smoker with a 30-pack per year history or have stopped smoking less than 15 years ago. The screening method for lung cancer is a low-dose computed tomography (also called a low-dose CT scan, or LDCT).

Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm – An Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm (or AAA) screening is for men between the ages of 65 and 75 years (current or former smokers). This screening is recommended only once and is an ultrasound of your abdomen.

Regular health screenings can help detect problems early, when your chances for treatment and cure are better. Learn more at

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The information in Healthy Living Online is for educational purposes only.  It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice.  The reader should always consult his or her healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation, or if they have any questions regarding a medical condition or treatment plan.