Screening Tests for Adults (age 50 and above)

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Not everyone in this age group may need screening for every condition listed here. Click on the links above to read more about each condition and to determine if screening may be appropriate for you or your family member. You should discuss screening options with your health care practitioner.

Overview

The need for regular health checks is more important in your older years. Height, weight, and blood pressure should be monitored, and the need to update immunisation should be reviewed. Flu vaccine is currently offered to all people aged 65 years and over. Vision and hearing should be tested in the elderly.
For men, while current evidence does not indicate that screening asymptomatic men for prostate cancer would reduce mortality, the Department of Health's Prostate Cancer Programme has developed the Prostate Cancer Risk Management Programme. For women, the National Screening programmes for Cervical and Breast cancer are currently in place.
In addition, the National Service Framework for Coronary Heart Disease requires General Practitioners to identify all people at significant risk of cardiovascular disease but who have not developed symptoms and offer them appropriate advice and treatment to reduce their risks. For more information on screening in adults, visit the UK National Screening Committee’s web site.
The NHS Bowel Cancer Screening Programme offers screening every two years to all men and women aged 60 to 69 in England. The age range is currently being extended to 60 to 74 and is open to individuals opting-in to be screened from age 75 and above. People within the age range are automatically sent an invitation, then their screening kit, so they can perform the test at home. After the first screening test, individuals are sent an invitation and screening kit every two years. For further information about the NHS Bowel Cancer Screening Programme see www.cancerscreening.nhs.uk/bowel/index.html.