Senior citizens and medical checkups must go hand in hand. With screening tests and preventive measures, it is possible to continue living a healthy and active life even as you reach your 60s and in the later years as well. Regular blood test for senior citizens and pelvic exams after age 65 can help in preventing a lot of health problems.
Here are some essential medical tests to undergo after reaching the age of 60.
When you think of senior citizens and medical checkups; eye tests will often come to mind. In the old age, cataracts, macular degeneration and glaucoma are common. Regular visits with your eye doctor for tests can help you preserve your vision better.
Hearing reduces as we age. But it is possible to correct or treat hearing problems with proper diagnosis. Yearly screening tests for your hearing can be very useful and make your life more comfortable with simple hearing solutions.
Dental checkups are required from a very young age and must continue as you age. The senior citizens’ medical checkup list must include dental visits at least twice a year. These visits can check the health of your teeth and gums; help maintain the prosthesis if any (dentures, caps, bridges etc.) and screen your oral health for any unusual growths.
Women over the age of 60 must have breast exams at least once in two years to catch cancerous growths in time. If you have a family history of breast cancer then your doctor may recommend more frequent screening tests. It can include mammograms and physical exams.
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Heart Disease Screening Tests
To keep the heart healthy, senior citizens’ medical checkup must include screening tests for cholesterol. A simple blood test can reveal if your levels of cholesterol are more than is normal for your age.
Annual health screenings after age 60 always include checking the blood pressure. High blood pressure can increase a person’s risks of developing heart diseases and also cause strokes. Many seniors may not even realize if they have any problems with their blood pressure unless the doctor checks it as at times symptoms can be late to manifest.
Both men and women must undergo regular pelvic exams to prevent conditions like incontinence. Pelvic tests in women can cover more conditions such as vaginal skin cancers, ovarian cancers, uterine cancers etc.
So, how often should you get a Pap smear after 50? Is it really necessary? Women over the age of 65 must go for Pap smears every two to three years to screen for vaginal or cervical cancers. If you have had a hysterectomy then you may not require Pap smears any more. Your doctor may include Pap smears with your pelvic tests if you are only keen on having it every 3-4 years. In men, pelvic tests can include an ultrasound to check the prostate, bladder and the pelvis area for any problems.
Older men are at a greater risk of developing prostate cancer. Your doctor will recommend the schedule for your prostate exams depending on your individual condition. It can be once in two years or annually.
The recommended screening tests by age can differ for each person.
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Colo Rectal Cancer Exams
Senior citizens’ medical checkups must include screening tests for colo rectal cancer every decade or as recommended by your doctor. The test is done using colonoscopy to check the colon and the rectum for unusual growths. This type of test can also include a blood test that is done annually.
It is important to follow your doctor’s recommendations for screening tests at any age.