TMH Living Well: Get screened during March MANness

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Calling all men! Have you had your car in for an oil change lately? How about a tune up?

Well, now it’s your turn. Get in and get your motor (and all its parts) checked during the March MANness event. For the entire month of March, The Memorial Hospital Medical Clinic is offering a one-stop screening appointment for men to get five screenings done at once, all for just $100.

Now, that’s convenient.

C’mon. Man up. Get screened.

What: March MANness Event, 5 screenings for $100

When: Entire month of March, Monday through Thursday 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Friday 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Where: TMH Medical Clinic, 785 Russell St.

Call: 970-826-2400

If you haven’t been to the doctor in the past year, you are not alone. Studies show that more than half of men in the U.S. haven’t seen a doctor in the past year. When they do go, it’s often when symptoms are pounding on the door.

“Men, in general, often wait too long to get care,” said Terri Jourgensen, RN, BSN, Clinical Director at TMH Medical Clinic.

That’s the motivation behind the March MANness campaign — to get men in, and get them screened for common diseases specific to men.

For 100 bucks, men get lab workups and screenings for high cholesterol and heart disease (lipid panel), diabetes (hemoglobin A1c), colon cancer (hemoccult card to take home), prostate cancer (PSA test for men 50+) and a hearing screen. Labs will be completed on site, and the appointment includes a visit with a doctor. Cash and credit are accepted, but not insurance.

Men name different reasons for not going to the doctor. It’s inconvenient. It goes against the manly idea of being strong and invincible. Plus, who wants to hear that something’s wrong?

“A lot of people avoid getting check-ups for fear the doctor will find something terribly wrong, especially if they have a family history of disease. But avoidance only makes it worse. Most diseases don’t kill you instantly, but they can debilitate you. That’s why it’s important for men to come in for screenings so they can continue a high quality of life,” Jourgensen said.

Men not only tend to wait too long to see the doctor, they also are less likely than women to have a primary care doctor — someone they see regularly and trust.

“In the past, having a primary care doctor was the norm. In the last decade or two there was a move to specialized care. While we still have — and need — specialists, I think patients are circling back around to wanting an established primary care doctor. There is great value in having a doctor, or team of doctors, who knows your health history and your medical needs from head to toe,” Jourgensen added.

According to the Centers for Disease Control, the most common diseases that strike men are heart disease, cancer, chronic lower respiratory disease and stroke. CDC states that motor vehicle accidents and suicides are also common causes for death among men.

“For men, stroke and heart disease increase with age, high blood pressure, diabetes mellitus, and high cholesterol,” said Dr. Pamela Kinder, regional neurologist.

If you are unable to get in to the clinic during March, consider attending the annual TMH Health Fair on April 26. Many of the same tests will be offered then on an individual basis.

Make a MANness appointment. It likely will take less time than an oil change.

This weekly article with tips on living well is sponsored by The Memorial Hospital at Craig — improving the quality of life for the communities we serve through patient-centered healthcare and service excellence.

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