Doctor's Appointments to Make This Year
| 4 min read
James D. Grant, M.D. is senior vice president and chief medical officer at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan. Dr. Grant is a native Michiganian and graduate of Wayne State University School of Medicine. He completed his post graduate training at Northwestern University Medical Center in Chicago. He is a diplomate of the American Board of Anesthesiology, completed his recertification in 2008 and is an associate examiner for the Board.
Ages 18 – 39
- A cholesterol screening should be done at least once before age 20. Younger adults should be screened every five years while older adults should be screened every year.
- A full-body skin check will identify moles or marks of concern.
- Blood pressure: If normal with no additional risk factors, check it at least every two years. Those who have an increased risk of hypertension or a history of hypertension may need more frequent screening.
- Screening for infections such as Hepatitis C and HIV.
- Immunizations: Influenza, Tdap (tetanus, diphtheria, pertussis), HPV (human papillomavirus) MMR (measles, mumps, rubella) and COVID-19. Additional immunizations may be recommended depending on each person’s vaccine health history.
- Eye exam: For individuals who have good vision and no other eye problems, the American Academy of Ophthalmology recommends a baseline eye exam once between age 20–29 and twice between age 30–39.
- Dental exam: The American Dental Association recommends that most healthy adults with no dental problems have a dental exam and cleaning every 6 months.
- Women: A Pap test for cervical cancer should start at age 21, then every three years if results are normal up until age 65.
Ages 40 – 64
- Diabetes screening: Get a blood sugar test at age 35, then every three years or upon physician recommendation if it is normal or if there are no risk factors.
- Immunizations: In addition to the vaccines listed above, the shingles vaccine is recommended at age 50.
- Colon cancer screening: Screening should start at age 45. Those at increased risk of colorectal cancer might need to start screening before age 45.
- Dental exams should be done every six months.
- Eye exam: The American Academy of Ophthalmology recommends individuals with no eye problems or risk factors get a baseline complete eye exam with eye disease screening at age 40, then as determined by an ophthalmologist.
- Women: Per the American Cancer Society, women of average risk should check for breast cancer with a screening mammogram at age 40, then annually until age 55, then every other year after age 55. However, those with risk factors may need to get a screening mammogram earlier than age 40 and yearly after age 55.
- Men: Prostate cancer screening should be discussed with your health care provider starting at age 50, or earlier with risk factors.
- Pneumonia vaccine: To help protect against pneumonia.
- Women: A bone density test is a special type of X-ray that tests for osteoporosis. Those at increased risk may need this test earlier than age 65.
- Eye exam: An annual or bi-annual eye exam to check visual acuity and check for diseases such as cataracts, glaucoma, and age-related macular degeneration.
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