How A Woman's Exam Would Differ

Breast cancer and bone loss will top the agenda, but if she brings a list of her own concerns, doctors will custom-tailor her physical

When I told my wife, who is also 52, about my day-long physical, she wondered if she would have had the same experience. Not exactly. A mammogram, pelvic exam and Pap smear are obvious differences. The effects of hormonal changes associated with menopause, like hot flashes or bone loss, would also be tested. Beyond these, says Dr. Richard Lang, "the issues are the same, but modified by gender."

She too would have gone through the same blood work-up, basic tests and measurements that I encountered. She would have had a sigmoidoscopy, because the frequency of colorectal cancer after 50 in both...

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