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May/June 2013
The Top
Health Checks
for Men over
The purpose of health screening is
to give a snapshot of a man’s health
status and to advise and manage
health and lifestyle problems
before they become serious. It
also allows an individual to track
his health status over time and to
take advantage of other screening
services as he gets older such as
prostate and bowel cancer screening
after the age of 50, for example.
Also conditions such as high blood
pressure and high cholesterol do
not cause symptoms until they are
advanced and severe while other
common diseases such as diabetes
and the effects of alcohol, smoking
and obesity often go undetected
until irreversible damage is done.
Why It’s Important:
Dr. Ihsan
Ullah Khan, Assistant Professor
and Specialist Urologist at GMC
Hospital explains that prostate
cancer has a strong age related
incidence especially in men age 60 to 70 years
old. “Prostate problems increase with age
because of hormonal changes inside the body,”
he says. “Some symptoms include hematoma,
recurrent UTI, difficulty in passing urine and
urine in a narrow stream with later symptoms
including bone pain, paraplegia, and/or renal
failure.” Prostate screening includes serum
PSA and a digital rectal examination and he
advises these screening tests for those who
are prone to their diseases six monthly or
one year, especially for men who are prone to
enlargement of the prostate (benign prostate
hyperplasia), prostatics or cancer.
Colon Cancer
Why It’s Important:
Colon cancer, says Dr.
Khan, is also age related. “Some symptoms
include change in bowel habit, constipation,
abdominal distension, blood in the stool, a
mass in the abdomen, decrease in weight,
disliking for food, and peri-anal itching,” he
says. “It is important for men over 50 years
for precautionary measure for early diagnosis
and treatment for these two diseases.” Colon
screening includes stool examination,
colonoscopy, and double contrast barium
enema and Dr. Khan indicates these screening
tests for the colon, like the prostate, are
paramount in men over age 50, especially
those at high risk and should be undertaken
every six months to once a year to minimize
the risk.
Why It’s Important:
Once a man hits age
50, quite often he may notice that it is more
challenging to read small print and also may
have to squint to see images on TV. While
those normal aging happenings are not
necessarily health problems, annual scheduling
of eye exams can do more and Dr.Salwa Attia,
Professor and Consultant of Ophthalmology at
GMC Hospital points out that some common
problems that increase over age of 50 include
presbyopia and refractive errors, glaucoma,
cataracts, visual complications due to diabetes,
hypertension like vein contusion, haemorrhage
and accidents. “A sign of a cataract is blurring
vision and also an inability to see definite
faces during the day-light even,” she says