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A Message from the Doc

Health authorities recommend that you consider routine full health checks on a two yearly basis starting somewhere between 45 - 50 years.
Certainly see your doctor before this age if you have any concerns but these routine checks are done from this age onwards for no better reason than the statistics show that health problems begin to occur with alarming regularity as we approach middle age.
Heart disease is your major early risk with more than half the deaths in men before retirement (still 65 for most) being due to heart attacks. Risk factors for this are easily detectable if you bother to check - high blood pressure, high cholesterol obesity, smoking etc - and reversible if you are willing to make the necessary lifestyle changes in the interests of your own health.
Bowel cancer and prostate cancer are the most common cancers in men and tend to affect your health in later years - but early signs of the disease process can be detected by early screening and potentially cu red in early cases. These cancers are surprisingly common but are deep and hidden and we tend not to develop symptoms until the cancer has been there for a long time and is well developed. The need for early screening is obvious if you want to prevent harm.
Bowel cancer screening is done by examining the faeces for chemical traces of blood - recommended on a two yearly basis from about the age of fifty. Colonoscopies are done on those with positive findings or if you have a near relative with bowel cancer or bowel polyps.
Prostate cancer is screened with a blood test called the PSA - this checks the level of a substance produced by the prostate and elevated levels are followed up to determine the cause of the rise. It can be elevated from conditions other than cancer so further testing is needed.
"The Finger" can give us an idea about the size of the prostate gland buy is highly unreliable in detecting early prostate cancer. The prostate generally enlarges with advancing age in most men and gives rise to plumbing problems in most to some degree. Similarly prostate cancer is a slowly growing tumor and any symptoms that are noticed as it grows are indistinguishable from those of the usual enlargement. The cancer can take years to grow out of the prostate gland but it is generally incurable once it has done so.
I would urge you ail to become aware of your health issues and to look after your body. Watch your weight and your diet - for it is true that we are what we eat. Keep fit, don't smoke and have regular health checks - you would be surprised what a huge difference these few simple Life strategies will make to your life expectancy and quality of life.

Enioy the Carnival and don't forget the heat and hydration issues.
Regards to you all ...The Doc