Men’s Top 5 Health Concerns

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Dry, cracked physical examination. Before that, it had been five years since he’d been to a doctor.

To Noel’s credit, he’s just being a guy. According to a 2001 CDC report, women are 33% more likely than men to visit a doctor in general, although the gap narrows with increasing age.

One could accept the statistic as just another difference between men and women, but the stakes are too high to remain complacent.

The Men’s Health Network (MHN) reports that men die at higher rates than women from the top 10 causes of death – heart disease, cancer, stroke, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, accidents, pneumonia and influenza, diabetes, suicide, heart disease as an example: “If you don’t get your cholesterol checked when it’s going high when you’re 20, and if don’t get your heart disease, Stroke is the third leading killer in the country, after heart disease and all forms of Lung cancer is the leading cancer killer of both men and women, claiming more lives than , colon, and combined. In men, there are expected to be about 213, 380 new cases of lung cancer and some 160,390 lung cancer deaths this year.

The good news is that rate of new lung cancer cases has been dropping since the 1980s, and deaths from the cancer have fallen since the 1990s. “>tobacco products by men that followed the Surgeon General’s report in 1964,” explains Sener.

Besides smoking, the ACS lists the following as risk factors for lung cancer:

Tobacco products are responsible for 90% of lung cancer, which puts the weight of prevention efforts on smoking cessation.

If you’re thinking about kicking the habit, Sener recommends the following resources:

  • American Cancer Society: (800) ACS-2345
  • National Cancer Institute Smoking Quitline: (877) 44U-QUIT

According to the National Institute on Aging, as soon as you stop smoking, your chances of getting cancer from smoking begins to shrink, and you can prevent further damage to your .

Prostate Cancer

Prostate cancer is the most common cancer found in men. It is the second leading type of cancer death in men, after lung cancer.

There is not enough known about what causes prostate cancer and how to prevent it. Yet the disease is treatable if found in early stages. This can be a challenge, since prostate cancer can show no symptoms until it has spread to other parts of the body.

This is where a connection to the doctor helps, says Bonhomme. “I personally know people who are alive today because they got (prostate cancer) screening.”

The American Cancer Society (ACS) recommends a prostate-specific antigen (PSA) blood test and digital rectal exam be offered annually for healthy men starting at age 50 or older. Men who are at high risk — such as those who have family history of prostate cancer or who are black — should begin testing earlier.

According to the ACS, other risk factors include:

  • Increasing age
  • Nationality. The cancer is most common in North America and Northwestern Europe.
  • High-fat diet. Men who eat a lot of red meat and high-fat dairy products and not enough fruits and vegetables may have a higher risk.

Although older age is a risk factor for prostate cancer, younger men should not be complacent. Thirty percent of prostate cancers occur in men under age 65. “The younger a man is, the more aggressive the tumor is,” says Stephen F. Sener, MD, ACS president.