Men and Women

Recommended health screenings for both men and women include:

  • Obesity: Have your body mass index (BMI) calculated to screen for obesity. You can determine this yourself by using the BMI calculator from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute at:
  • High cholesterol: Have your cholesterol checked regularly starting at age 35 for men and 45 for women. If you’re a man younger than 35 or a woman younger than 45 talk to you doctor about whether to have your cholesterol checked at an earlier age if:
    • You have diabetes or high blood pressure
    • Heart disease runs in your family
    • You smoke
  • High blood pressure: Have your blood pressure checked at least every year. A blood pressure reading is considered high if it is 130/80 or higher.
  • Colorectal cancer: Have a test for colorectal cancer at age 50. Your doctor can help you decide which test is right for you. If you have a family history of colorectal cancer, you may need to be tested at an earlier age.
  • Diabetes: Have a fasting blood sugar or glucose tolerance test done every three years if you are over 45 years of age. If you have one or more risk factors such as high blood pressure, high blood cholesterol, over weight or obese, or a family history, an annual screening for diabetes is recommended.
  • Depression: Your emotional health is as important as your physical health. If you have felt “down” or hopeless for more than two weeks and have felt little interest or pleasure in doing things you normally enjoy, you may be depressed. Talk to your doctor about being screened for depression.


Additional screenings recommended for men include:

  • Abdominal aortic aneurysm: If you are between the ages of 65 and 75 and have ever smoked (100 or more cigarettes during your lifetime), you need to be screened once for an abdominal aortic aneurysm, an abnormally large or swollen blood vessel in your abdomen.
  • Prostate cancer: There is insufficient data to recommend for or against prostate cancer testing. The American Cancer Society recommends that the PSA blood test and digital rectal exam be offered to men who have an average risk at age 50 and to men at high risk (African Americans and those with a strong family history) at age 45. Talk to your doctor about what is right for you.


Additional screenings recommended for women include:

  • Breast cancer: Have a mammogram every one to two years starting at age 40.
  • Cervical cancer: Have a Pap smear every one to three years if you:
    • Have ever been sexually active
    • Are between the ages of 21 and 65
  • Osteoporosis (thinning of the bones): Have a bone density test beginning at age 65 to screen for osteoporosis. If you are between the ages of 60 and 64 and weigh 154 pounds or less, talk to you doctor about being tested.