Today: Must-Have Medical Tests For Women & When Do You Need Mammogram?

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Today: Must-Have Medical Tests For Women

Dr. Keri Peterson, a contributor to Women’s Health magazine, came by Today May 16 2013 to talk about the must-have medical tests for women. First up was blood pressure, which Dr. Keri Peterson said should be checked every two years starting in your twenties. If it’s normal, that should be often enough, but if it’s abnormal, you will need to be checked more than that. She said that if there’s a family history for any of these issues, to make sure your doctor knows.

Today: Must-Have Medical Tests For Women & When Do You Need Mammogram?

Make sure to talk to your doctor about your family history to determine the best care.

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When To Have Cholesterol Levels Tested

You should have your cholesterol checked in your twenties. If it’s normal, you can wait up to five years before you get it checked again.

Thyroid Function Test

Dr. Peterson said that if you have no symptoms, it’s not recommended that you get your thyroid function checked. But if you’re experiencing symptoms, you should. For an under-active thyroid, the symptoms are fatigue, weight gain, constipation and hair loss. An over-active thyroid’s symptoms would be nervousness, rapid heart rate and weight loss.

How Often Do You Need a Mammogram?

Dr. Peterson said that there are two sets of guidelines for how often mammograms are needed. The American Cancer Society and the United States Preventative Services Task Force both have different recommendations. Most physicians follow the ACS guidelines, according to Dr. Peterson. Those guidelines say to get them annually after the age of 40. If you have a family history, you may need to do it more often then that. Always discuss this with your gynecologist.

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Pap Smears Every Three Years

Dr. Peterson said that in your twenties, you can get a pap smear every three years if it’s normal. Starting in your thirties, you can do one every three to five years, as long as it’s normal.

Sports Stories Around the World

Today also had several sports stories from around the world in the past month. They showed them in a series of short video clips that ran a bit like one of those YouTube videos you see sometimes that shows only funny clips. Among the clips shown was 30 skiers in Quebec all doing a backflip at the same time, a French cyclist crashing into a sign during a race and a guy in Ireland who was on his iPad while watching a game got hit by the ball. There was also a guy who dove out of the way of a fly ball, letting his girlfriend take the hit, and a golfer who stripped down to his undies and walked into a pond to make a shot. One clip showed Al Roker in a golf cart hovercraft. He said it was a lot of fun.

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