A few weeks ago we discussed preventive screenings that all of us should do depending on our age.  This week I will narrow down to the screenings that are recommended based on male or female gender.

To review, the recommendations are from the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF). The group is made up of 16 volunteer experts in the fields of preventive medicine and primary care including internal medicine, family medicine, pediatrics, behavioral health, obstetrics/gynecology, and nursing. Most of the task force members are practicing clinicians. They use their own experience and receive input from topic experts and the public to come up with the recommendations.

The USPSTF’s list below is broken down by gender. It does not include pregnancy-related items; any woman planning on becoming pregnant, or already pregnant, should see her provider and discuss these additional recommendations.


— Genetic breast cancer screening in those with family history of breast, ovarian, tubal or peritoneal or ancestry with BRCA 1 and 2 gene mutations.

— Offer risk-reducing medications to those at increased risk for breast cancer.

— Biennial screening mammography ages 50 to 74 (other groups recommend starting at 40).

— Cervical cancer screening every 3 years from 21-65 PAP only, starting at 30, every 5 years if HPV testing also included.  

— Chlamydia and gonorrhea screening in sexually active women 24 years and younger.

— Bone density screening for osteoporosis in postmenopausal women younger than 65 if increased risk and for all women over 65 years.  (Typically every 2 years.)


— Abdominal aortic aneurysm screen in those who ever smoked.  One-time screen between ages 65-75.

— PSA screening ages 55-65.  This is a grade C recommendation, which means the USPSTF has made no recommendation for or against:  “Before deciding whether to be screened, men should have an opportunity to discuss the potential benefits and harms of screening with their clinician and to incorporate their values and preferences in the decision.” 

Two additional screenings recommended:

— Intimate partner violence, elder abuse and abuse of vulnerable adults screening

— Depression in adults

Do these apply to everyone? No, many of these have an algorithm or additional factors that you and your doctor or medical provider can review and discuss to see if you should follow the recommendation. 

This is not an all-inclusive list; some specialty group recommendations may be slightly different than the USPSTF. That is okay. You should discuss this with your provider and find out the best schedule for you. You may have family history or other factors that modify these recommendations. I did not include recommendations for pregnant women or for those under 18; and I feel strongly that those groups should discuss their preventive measures with their OB/GYN or pediatrician.  

Have a great week, and be healthier today than you were yesterday! 

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