You're retired and are getting ready to start on that bucket list. Don't ignore your health and let an age-related disease put a hole in your bucket. Your body is changing as it ages and you are more vulnerable to a few medical diseases than when you were much younger. Get a physical exam done regularly and talk with your doctor about these top three diseases which can cut your retirement activities short.
Heart disease is one of the leading causes of senior male deaths. As your body ages, your blood vessels become less flexible. Cholesterol in your blood stream can build up easier as plaque on your vessel walls. Should the plaque block one of the blood vessels that feeds the heart, you can have a heart attack. If plaque builds up in one of the small blood vessels in your brain, you could have a stroke. If you have serious plaque problems that show up as blood clots in your legs, a small clot can travel through the bloodstream into your heart or brain, causing a heart attack or stroke.
A regular cardiology work up, done at a place like ICE, Institute of Cardiovascular Excellence, will show the level of cholesterol in your blood and indicate if you have a problem with blood clots. Your doctor will do tests to determine the level of plaque you have in your coronary blood vessels, the vessels that feed the heart. The doctor may prescribe medications to reduce your cholesterol level and reduce your risk of having blood clots.
The older you get, the more at risk you are of high blood sugar, a major cause of diabetes. You may go for years without symptoms until you notice that you have to urinate more often and are always thirsty. This is when many men finally see their doctor for a check up. A regular examination will track your blood sugar and help control it before you develop severe side effects.
Diabetes causes a number of problems that will keep you from enjoying your retirement. Nerves and blood vessels are affected by the high blood sugar. You can lose the feeling in your feet and hands. Kidney failure and partial blindness can happen. Stroke and heart attack can occur with untreated diabetes. Your doctor will help you track your blood sugar and reduce your risk of all of these diabetic side effects.
Cancer of the prostate is a high risk for the senior male. Unfortunately, there are few symptoms to watch out for. Pain when urinating or difficulty starting and stopping the urine are a few signs that can point to a prostate problem. Your doctor can do a manual inspection and blood test to determine how likely it is that you have an enlarged prostate. These tests aren't foolproof so the doctor may need to do a biopsy of your prostate to make a positive identification for cancer.
This type of cancer is aggressive, spreading quickly throughout the body. Early detection and treatment is the beat way to prevent the spread of cancer cells. Prostate screening should be a routine part of your regular physical examination.
Don't miss out on doing all of those things that you've been planning for your retirement. See your doctor regularly and avoid being slowed down by these common age-related health problems.