Our doctors at Point Lonsdale Medical Group recognise that prevention is vital to improve men’s health outcomes. We understand the physical and psychosocial issues surrounding men’s health and provide a level of sensitivity that will enable men to deal with medical concerns with care and privacy.
The life expectancy of Australian men is 79 compared with 84 for Australian women. Regular medical check-ups are essential to stay healthy and to pick up early warning signs of disease or illnesses such as heart disease, diabetes and some cancers.
When you have a health check, your doctor will talk to you about your medical history, your family’s medical history and your lifestyle. Your diet, weight, how much you exercise and whether or not you smoke will also be discussed. There is also available a 45-49 year old preventative health check which is an extensive health check and is covered by Medicare.
The risk of heart disease can be significantly lowered by ceasing smoking, eating a healthy diet, maintaining a healthy weight with a BMI between 20-25 and a waist under 95cm, and exercising regularly.
Chronic health conditions such as high cholesterol, high blood pressure and diabetes need to be managed, working to achieve targets which lower risk.
Our doctors recommend tests for checking for blood in the stools every 2 years when over 50 and a colonoscopy in those with a family history of bowel cancer.
They advise men between 19 and 32 to regularly examine their testes to check for any irregular changes or lumps testicular cancer.
Benign prostatic hyperplasia is a common condition affecting 1 in 7 men between 40-49 and increasing to 1 in 4 over 70. A yearly check of the prostate can help detect this and it is important to discuss with your doctor any changing urinary symptoms such as frequency, slow stream, dribbling or nocturia.
Prostate cancer was the most commonly diagnosed cancer in Australia in 2013. It is estimated to become the third most commonly diagnosed cancer in 2017, while remaining the most commonly diagnosed cancer among males.
Erectile dysfunction is another common condition in men affecting 1 in 5 men over 40 and 2 in 3 men over 70. It also can be a warning sign of medical illnesses such as heart disease, diabetes or depression and needs to be discussed with your doctor.
Depression affects 1 in 6 Australian men. Young men commit suicide four times more than young women and men over 65 also have a very high suicide rate. Depression can be associated with medical illnesses such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease or chronic pain or death of a partner and isolation.
Our doctors encourage men to discuss these issues and then provide the appropriate intervention and support which can include counselling, cognitive behavioural therapy, referral to a Psychiatrist or Psychologist or medications.
Prostate cancer in Australia
The following material has been sourced from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare
Estimated number of new cases of prostate cancer diagnosed in 2017
Estimated % of all new male cancer cases diagnosed in 2017
Estimated number of deaths from prostate cancer in 2017
Estimated % of all male deaths from cancer in 2017
Chance of surviving at least 5 years (2009–2013)
Males living with prostate cancer at the end of 2012 (diagnosed in the 5 year period 2008 to 2012)