Annual wellness exams!
Just like we have kids go to well child visits annually (or more often), we need to continue these yearly preventive health visits after we become adults. During these preventive clinic visits we will do education and counseling on important items such on nutrition and exercise, tobacco cessation or decrease in excessive alcohol intake, screen for medical conditions, see if you are up to date on all vaccines and possibly do labs if necessary.
These visits may also include discussions on the need for colonoscopy (at 50 but earlier if family history of colon cancer or you have medical conditions increasing your risk for colon cancer), screening for diabetes, need for comprehensive eye exams, immunizations (hpv up to 26 for males but may still benefit if older than 26 so talk to your PCP, shingles at age 50, pneumonia after 65 but depending on presence of chronic conditions you may need it before 65 and may actually need both types- the prevnar and pneumovax. The flu vaccine is important to get annually but this coming flu season it is even more crucial. Also make sure to get tetanus diphtheria vaccine every 10 years)
If you are feeling sad or down we are here for you. If you need to talk to someone your PCP’s office is great and safe place to express any feelings you have.
We no longer routinely do prostate screens for men starting at age 50 but for those with increased risk based off family history and ethnicity, your PCP may recommend it.
All men need an HIV and hep C test at least once in lifetime. If you are at increased risk you should be checked at least annually for sexually transmitted diseases including chlamydia, gonorrhea, and syphilis.
Now that summer is coming up, let’s make sure we are taking care of our skin and bringing to our primary care physician’s attention any spots that appear to be growing or changing. And before you head out, don’t forget your sunscreen!
I hope everyone has a great rest of the week.
Dr. Efe Sahinoglu with Birmingham Direct Primary Care