Women 40-60


Regular health checks and screenings, in combination with a healthy diet and regular physical activity, can assist in the prevention of disease or illness. Recommendations are made for how often you should have a blood pressure, cholesterol, Cervical Screening Test, blood sugar, breast, skin and immunisation review.

Below is a list of the tests you should consider having. We have briefly listed what you are testing for, why you need to test and when to test; and for heart and cardiovascular health, the healthy limits for women.

The government offers a '45-49-year-old health check' – a once-only check with your doctor for those at risk of developing a chronic disease.

The complete range of medical checks and screening procedures required throughout life will vary for every person, depending on individual risks, medical background and family history. Talk to your doctor about what tests you require to maintain your health.

Heart & cardiovascular health

What Why "Normal" How often
Blood pressure (BP) To check it's not too high 130/80 mmHG Every 2 years, then every year after you turn 50
Cholesterol To check it's not too high Below 6.0 Every 5 years, unless at higher risk, then maybe every 1 or 2 years
Body mass index (BMI) To measure the best weight for your health 20-25 Every 2 years, then every year after you turn 50

Ovaries & uterus health

What Why When How often
Cervical Screening Test

The Cervical Screening Test looks for the human papillomavirus (HPV), a common virus that can cause changes to cells in your cervix, which in rare cases can develop into cervical cancer

Between the ages of 25 and 74 Your first Cervical Screening Test is due two years after your last Pap test. After that, you will need to have the test only every five years if your results are normal
Ovarian cancer screening Screen for changes in the ovary indicating ovarian cancer If you are at risk due to family history, or experiencing symptoms As your doctor advises

Blood sugar

What Why When How often
Glucose (sugar) check Testing for diabetes If you are overweight, or at risk of diabetes Every year if at high risk, otherwise every 3 years

Breast health

What Why When How often
Breast self-check To check for changes that may indicate breast cancer From your 20s onwards Every month
Mammogram Screening for breast cancer

If you are:

  • over 40 with a family history of breast cancer
  • over 50
Every 2 years

mammogram

Bladder & bowel health

What Why When How often

Bowel cancer test

Screening for bowel cancer

If you:

  • have a family history of bowel cancer
  • are over 50
Every 2 years
Urine test To assess kidney health If you are over 50

 

Every year

Sexual health

What Why When How often
Sexually transmissible infection (STI) check, including chlamydia Screening for STIs Before a new partner, or if a change of partner As required

Bone health

What Why When How often
Bone health review Screening for osteoporosis If you are over 50 As your doctor advises

Skin health

What Why When How often
Skin examination Screening for skin cancer If you are 40-60 Every year

Eyes, ears & dental health

What Why When How often
Eye examination Testing vision, macular and retina health If you are 40-60 Every year
Hearing test Testing for deterioration If you notice any sumptoms

 

Examination and cleaning

 

Testing for tooth decay and gum disease

If you are 40-60

 

Every year

Mental & emotional health

What Why When How often
Mental health check Testing for anxiety, depression If you are experiencing symptoms such as anxiety, irritability or sadness As needed

Fertility

What Why When How often
Reproductive health check Looking for factors that may affect the health of mother or baby If you are looking to become pregnant When you are thinking of/beginning to try to conceive

Immunisation review

What Why When How often
Checking your immunity
  • Influenza virus strains can change each year, which means annual influenza vaccination is needed to provide protection against the most recent virus
  • Some immunisations can wear off after a long time, so you may need booster shots 

  • Influenza if at risk
  • Tetanus and Diptheria age 50
  • Whooping cough if in contact with young children
  • Every year for influenza
  • As directed by your doctor

References

  1. RACGP, Guidelines for Preventive Activities in General Practice, 9th Edition (May 2018)

  2. Australian Government, Department of Health, The National Immunisation Program

Last updated 08 November 2018 — Last reviewed 11 October 2018

This web page is designed to be informative and educational. It is not intended to provide specific medical advice or replace advice from your health practitioner. The information above is based on current medical knowledge, evidence and practice as at October 2018.

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