Physicals

Regular health check-ups are important for men. Even in the absence of symptoms, we recommend routine, yearly physicals for males of all ages.

We Offer Complete Physicals that Include:

Why Screening Tests Are Important

Getting the right screening test at the right time is one of the most important things a man can do for his health. Screenings find diseases early, before you have symptoms, when they’re easier to treat.

9 Tests Men Should Not Ignore:

1. Prostate Cancer

Have a discussion with our practitioners about the benefits and risks of a prostate cancer screening to make an informed decision about testing. After age 50, most men should consider yearly prostate screenings. High risk men should consider testing at age 45. If you have more than one first-degree relative diagnosed with prostate cancer before the age of 65, consider screening at age 40. Prostate screenings can include the PSA (prostate-specific antigen) blood test and DRE (digital rectal exam).

2. Testicular Cancer

The American Cancer Society recommends that testicular exams be incorporated into every male patient’s annual physical exam.

3. Colorectal Cancer

The USPSTF says most patients should begin colorectal cancer screening with a colonoscopy at age 50 and undergo the test every 10 years, usually until the age of 75

4. Skin Cancer

Talk with our practitioners about suspicious-looking skin. A biopsy can determine whether you have skin cancer and, if so, what type of skin cancer you have.

5. High Blood Pressure

The American Heart Association (AHA) recommends patients have their blood pressure taken at least once each year starting at age 20

6. Cholesterol Levels

The AHA recommends testing cholesterol and triglycerides levels every 4 to 6 years

7. Type 2 Diabetes

Screening for diabetes should occur at least every three years starting at age 45.

8. Eye Health

Eye and vision examinations are an important part of preventive health care. Individuals may be unaware of eye and vision problems because sometimes there are no obvious signs or symptoms. In order to maintain good vision, an early diagnosis and treatment of eye and vision problems is necessary.

Prostate Exams

Most prostate cancer starts in the gland cells in the prostate. Men often do not have symptoms in early, which is why prostate cancer is known as a silent killer. In the United States prostate cancer is the most common form of cancer among men besides skin cancer. Prostate cancer is a leading cause of cancer deaths among men. Detecting prostate cancer early is critical to survival. If the cancer is detected before it spreads, patients have a nearly 100 percent chance of survival after five years. Survival rates have increased over the past 25 years with early diagnosis and treatment improvements.

Statistics

• One in seven men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer in his lifetime.
• One in 38 men will die from the disease, making it the second most common cause of cancer death in men.
• In 2015, 220,800 new cases of prostate cancer will be diagnosed in the United States, with 27,540 deaths.
• In Texas, it is estimated that 13,363 new cases of prostate cancer will be diagnosed in 2015, and 1,919 men will die from the disease.

Risk Factors

Age: 60 percent of all prostate cancer cases diagnosed are in men age 65 and older.
Family History: Men with close relatives (father or brother) who have had prostate cancer are twice as likely to develop the disease.
Race: The highest rate of prostate cancer in the United States is in African Americans.
Genetic Factors: A small percentage of cases have an increased risk caused by a gene mutation on BRCA-1 or BRCA-2 or having Lynch syndrome.
Diet: Men who’s diets contain a high amount of red meat and dairy with few fruits and vegetables have a higher risk of developing prostate cancer.

Symptoms

The following may be symptoms of prostate cancer but could also be linked to other health issues. If these symptoms are present, men are encouraged to consult their physician for proper testing:
• Interrupted or weak urine flow
• Difficulty regulating urination
• A burning sensation or painful urination
• Blood in urine or semen
• Stiffness or pain in ribs, upper thighs, spine, hips, or other bones
• Painful ejaculation
• Urinating frequently, especially at night
• Difficulty having an erection
• Numbness or weakness in feet or legs

Prevention

• Cut down red meat and dairy products in your diet.
• Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables daily. Some vegetables that are rich in substances and may help prevent prostate cancer are tomatoes, soybeans, cauliflower, and broccoli.
• Eating soy products may reduce risk of prostate cancer.
• Exercising regularly may decrease the risk of prostate cancer.
• Obesity can further complicate prostate cancer so try to maintain a healthy body weight.

Screening

Have a discussion with your physician the benefits and risks of a prostate cancer screening to make an informed decision about testing. After age 50, most men should consider yearly prostate screenings. High risk men should consider testing at age 45. If you have more than one first-degree relative diagnosed with prostate cancer before the age of 65, consider screening at age 40. Prostate screenings can include the PSA (prostate-specific antigen) blood test and DRE (digital rectal exam).

Treatment Options

Depending on how advanced the cancer is and whether it has spread to other body parts treatment options vary. The physician determines the most appropriate treatment for each patient. Treatment may include surveillance, surgery, radiation therapy, proton therapy, hormone therapy, chemotherapy, vaccine treatment, bone-directed treatment, and cryotherapy.
Sources: American Cancer Society, National Cancer Institute, Prostate Cancer Foundation, and Texas Cancer Registry

Testosterone

Testosterone is the sex hormone that develops boys into men. Testosterone is important during puberty and the development of male physical features. This hormone maintains men’s muscle strength and mass, a deeper voice, and facial and body hair. Testosterone levels can affect men’s sex drive, erections, mood, muscle mass and bone density. For men testosterone is also needed to produce sperm.

What is Low Testosterone? (Low T)

Some men have low levels of testosterone. This is called hypogonadism, or low-T. The level of a man’s testosterone usually decreases with age. About 4 out of 10 men over the age of 45 have low testosterone. It is seen in about 2 out of 10 men over 60, 3 out of 10 men over 70, and 3 out of 10 men over 80 years old.

*Urology Care Foundation

What are the Signs of Low T in Men?

There are non-sexual and sexual signs of low testosterone.

Non-Sexual Signs

• Increase in body fat
• Lower energy levels
• Reduced muscle mass
• Depression
• Anemia (low iron)
• Calcium loss from bone

Sexual Signs

• Low sex drive
• Poor erections (weaker and fewer)
• Wanting sex less often

 

What are Risk Factors for Low T?

Certain health problems can also tend to cause low testosterone. Some of these are:

  • High blood pressure (about 40 out of 100 also have low testosterone)
  • High cholesterol (about 40 out of 100 also have low testosterone)
  • Diabetes (about 50 out of 100 also have low testosterone)
  • Overweight (about 50 out of 100 also have low testosterone)
  • HIV (about 30 out of 100 also have low testosterone)
  • AIDS (about 50 out of 100 also have low testosterone)
  • Long-term opioid use (almost 75 out of 100 also have low testosterone)

How is Low T Diagnosed?

A blood test is used to find low testosterone levels. In general, if you hormone levels is below 300 ng/DL a diagnosis of low testosterone is made.  A PSA (prostate specific antigen) blood test may also be done to check for prostate cancer signs. Your health care provider may also test to measure the red blood cells in your body (hematocrit). A hematocrit is checked to keep record of your red blood cell count, because it can go up if you take testosterone.

Testosterone Replacement Therapy

There are many choices for raising testosterone levels. However, not everyone chooses treatment. Testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) can be given using:
Biote
• Skin gel
• Shots
• Patches
The most common type of treatment is skin gel. This is used by about 70 out of 100 patients. After a shower, the gel is rubbed onto your shoulders or upper arms. About 10% of patients use shots, and 17% of patients use patches. About 3% of patients use testosterone in other forms, such as patches or pellets placed in the body. Pills are not approved for use in the U.S.
Taking testosterone for non-medical reasons is not recommended. Body building, aging prevention, and performance enhancement are examples of non-medical reasons. Men should not take TRT if their testosterone levels have not been tested or they have normal testosterone levels. TRT use will not help your health problems if you have normal testosterone levels. TRT can also decrease your sperm count and fertility, so keep this in mind if you are trying to father a child.

A doctor who specializes in diagnosing low-T should examine you carefully before you take TRT. Your health provider should not prescribe TRT without taking an extensive health history and giving you a physical exam and blood tests. Other health problems can have some of the same symptoms for low-T so other causes of symptoms need to be ruled out before testosterone is prescribed.

Your doctor should talk to you about possible side effects before you start TRT. Side effects can include:
• Acne (pimples)
• Breast soreness or swelling
• A high red blood cell count
• Swelling of the ankles or feet
• Smaller testicles
• Infertility
You should have regular check-ups if your doctor prescribes TRT. Follow-up visits with blood tests for testosterone level, PSA and hematocrit should be scheduled. Depending on your health history, your doctor may want to follow up with other tests as well.
Talk about the risks and benefits of taking testosterone replacement therapy with your doctor. Do not take TRT if you do not have low levels of testosterone. You need to be aware of the possible benefits, side effects and risks before you start taking TRT. Today’s science does not offer final answers about whether taking TRT will increase your risk of prostate cancer or heart disease.

What Can I Expect After Treatment?

Testosterone replacement has been shown to:

  • Improve energy
  • Improve sex drive
  • Increase muscle mass
  • Lower body fat
  • Help sleep
  • Improve erections
  • Raise energy level
  • Improve mood

Testosterone treatment may also lower the risk for broken bones by increasing bone mineral density. Jus like in other chronic conditions, testosterone treatment is a life-long therapy. Stopping treatment will result in low levels.
Sources: Urology Health Foundation