Published on October 16, 2015

Q&A: Good reasons to get screened

Don’t let illness sneak up on you.

Paying attention to your health, even when you feel fine, can make staying well easier in the long term.

Jeffrey Olson, DO, a family medicine physician at Mercy Primary Care–Holme Avenue, explains why regular screening tests and checkups with a doctor are good ways to take control of your health.

Q: What is a screening?

Health screenings involve the use of tests, exams or other procedures to detect a disease early in people who look well or aren’t having symptoms. These exams can make it easier to spot problems early, when treatment is often more effective. They might even prevent a problem from developing in the first place.

Q: Is it worth my time?

Absolutely—health screenings are important. Catching a condition early or preventing it from developing can change the course of disease and improve your long-term chances of doing well.

Q: How would I know which tests are for me?

A conversation with your doctor can help you find out which screenings are right for you. For instance, if you are a 40-year-old male, it may not be a bad idea to have your blood pressure, cholesterol and weight checked. For women, beginning at age 40, we like to discuss starting screening for breast cancer. In men and women at age 50, we start colorectal cancer screening.

Q: Will it cost me anything?

Today, many preventive care services are covered by insurance at no additional cost.

Jeff Olson

Getting to know Jeffrey Olson, DO

Specialty: Family medicine (board-certified)
Medical school: Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine
Internship and residency: Mercy Suburban Hospital
Office location: Mercy Primary Care–Holme Avenue (215.624.6007)
Personal: Raised in Delaware County; has a twin brother.