You say you've never had your cholesterol tested and don't know your PSA level. What screening tests do you recommend?
Let's stay away from pediatrics. For adults, we can debate the Pap smear for women—not whether but how often. Aside from that, there's no reason for any routine screening, including an annual physical examination. Go to the physician whenever you have a question—and wouldn't it be nice if you had a physician who was rewarded for taking the time to answer? All the healthy Americans who "know their numbers," their cholesterol, BMI, PSA, bone mineral density, and more, are not advantaged; they are medicalized.
There you have it from Dr. Hadler. Other U.S. News coverage highlights different views on some of these topics. Here's a list of questions to ask your doc about cancer screening tests, including the PSA test for prostate cancer. We also wrote about recent colon cancer screening recommendations that added two new options to a stable of acceptable tests. This first-person account offers a different perspective on lowering cholesterol. Our columnist Bernadine Healy wrote about why more cancer screening tests are needed. And this piece on exercise cites research describing its health benefits.