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Health Screening Guidelines

Knowing at what age and how often to get immunizations and other health screenings can be confusing and overwhelming. Thibodaux Regional Medical Center has compiled a list of health screenings and tests with information about each for adults, women and children. We make it our mission to help you understand your health needs.

Adult Health

Below is a list of immunizations and health screenings that all adults should consider getting. We have provided information regarding when immunizations and screenings are needed along with additional health information.

Immunizations

Tetanus-Diphtheria shot:
Everyone needs this every 10 years.

Rubella (German Measels) shot:
If you are a woman who is considering pregnancy and you have not had a shot for German measels, you should talk to your provider.

Pneumococcal (pneumonia) shot:
Everyone needs this one time at about age 65.

Influenza (flu) shot:
Everyone over age 65 needs this every year. If you have lung or heart disease, diabetes, HIV or cancer you may need pneumococcal and flu shots before age 65. Health care workers may also benefit. Speak to your provider for guidelines on who cannot receive flu shots.

Screenings:

Hepatitis B:
If you have contact with human blood or body fluids you may be at risk for Hepatitis B. You may also be at risk if you have unprotected sex or share needles during intravenous drug use (if you participate in these activities, please visit your physician as soon as possible). Hepatitis B shots can protect people with these criteria.

Cholesterol:
Men age 35-65 and women age 45-65 should have their cholesterol checked on a regular basis (at least once a year). Too much cholesterol can clog your blood vessels and cause heart disease and other serious problems. You should see your physician to test levels of "bad cholesterol" (LDL) and "good cholesterol" (HDL). For more information, please see your physician.

Colorectal Cancer:
Colorectal cancer is one of the leading causes of death from cancer. If caught early, however, it can be treated. If you are age 50 or older, you should have tests regularly to detect it. For more information, call the Cancer Center of Thibodaux Regional at 493-4700.

Oral Health Care:
Visit your dentist at least once every year for checkups.

Preventative Care for Women

Read on for information about essential preventative care and health screenings for women. It is important to take preventative measures to ensure issues are found and corrected early.

Breast Care:
Women 40 years of age and older should have an annual mammogram. Women considered high risk for breast cancer should have a baseline mammogram at age 35, especially if your mother or sister has had breast cancer.

Women age 20 and older should have an annual clinical breast exam and perform monthly breast self-examinations.

For more information, or for instruction on conducting breast self-exams, call the Cancer Center of Thibodaux Regional at 493-4700.

Pap Smear:
Along with an annual gynocologic exam, all women should have a pap smear. This simple test has saved many lives by detecting cancer of the cervix early.

Child Health

All children should receive the following immunizations and health screenings to ensure proper childhood health and to prevent the risk of serious diseases when they become adults.

Immunizations:

Polio (OPV or IPV):
At 2 months, 4 months, 6-18 months, 4-6 years.

Diphtheria-Tetanus-Pertussis (DTP):
At 2 months, 4 months, 6 months, 15-18 months, 4-6 years. Tetanus-Diphtheria (Td) at 11-16 years.

Measles-Mumps-Rubella (MMR):
At 12-15 months and either 4-6 years or 11-12 years.

Haemophilus Influenzae type b (Hib):
At 2 months, 4 months, 6 months and 12-15 months; OR 2 months, 4 months and 12-15 months depending on the vaccine type.

Hepatitis B (HBV):
At birth-2 months, 1-4 months and 16-18 months.

Chickenpox (VZV):
At 1-12 years.

Tests and Exams:

Newborn Screening:
These blood tests should be done before your baby is 7 days old. Common tests include those for PKU, thyroid and sickle cell disease.

Blood Pressure:
Children should have blood pressure measurements regularly, starting at about 3 years of age. High blood pressure in children needs medical attention. It may be a sign of underlying disease and, if not treated, may lead to serious illness. Check with your pediatrician for guidelines.

Vision and Hearing:
Your child should have vision and hearing tests beginning at about 3 or 4 years of age.

Additional Tests:

Your child may need other tests to prevent health problems. Some common ones are:

Anemia (Blood) Test:
Your child may need to be tested for anemia ("low blood") when he or she is still a baby. Children may also need this test as they get older. Some children are more likely to get anemia. Ask your health care provider about anemia testing.

Cholesterol (Blood) Test:
Children (2 years and older) may need this test especially if they have a parent with high cholesterol or a parent or grandparent with heart disease before age 55. If a family history is not available, testing may be needed if your child is obese or has high blood pressure.

Tuberculosis (TB) Skin Test:
Children may need this test if they have had close contact with a person who has TB, live in an area where TB is more common than average (such as a Native American reservation, a homeless shelter or an institution) or have recently moved from Asia, Africa, Central America, South America, the Caribbean or the Pacific Islands.