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Men’s Health: It’s not just a magazine cover, part II

July 8, 2020

Yaqoob Syed, D.O., a family practitioner with NCH Medical Group, addresses preventable health problems and common questions men have about health issues.

Q: Do we really need to see our doctor before starting a new workout routine? We hear this all the time, but is it really necessary?

Dr. Syed: Exercise is one of the best ways to prevent chronic diseases and improve overall well-being. However, even exercise can have some risks so it is important to be evaluated before starting a new workout routine in order to make sure there are not any underlying risk factors that can lead to complications after starting exercise. These risk factors can include heart disease, lung disease, muscle and bone problems, as well as any bleeding issues that may lead to complications with falls or injuries.

Q: Why should I get a flu shot? Are there any other shots I should get?

Dr. Syed: The flu (influenza) is a potentially serious disease that can lead to hospitalization and even death. The flu shot can help reduce the risk of getting the flu and reduce the risk of complications from the flu. The flu shot is an important preventative tool for people with chronic diseases.

Other vaccines that are recommended by the CDC include:

  • TDaP: Once every 10 years
  • Pneumonia vaccine: Routine at age 65 or older, earlier for patients with chronic medical conditions
  • Shingles: Two doses starting at age 50

There may be other recommendations such as a hepatitis A or B vaccine, depending on travel and prior immunization history.

Q: How often should a man (with no pain or symptoms of illness) visit a physician?

Dr. Syed: This depends on age and other risk factors. Generally, men should visit their primary care physician (PCP) once a year for a yearly checkup (annual physical). However, depending on any risk factors (e.g., age, chronic diseases), men should visit their PCP at least every three months, or sooner as directed.

Q: I work an office job and my boss says I have a choice of coming back to the office or continuing to work from home until we get a COVID-19 vaccine. If you had that decision to make, what would you choose and why?

Dr. Syed: This is a very common question now and it is slightly complicated. With COVID-19 being more concerning for people who are older and have chronic diseases, such as heart disease, lung disease, diabetes and immunosuppression, it is important for people who have to make this decision to talk to their PCP first. Their PCP can help guide them to make the best decision based on their health and risk factors.

Dr. Syed has been with NCH Medical Group for two years and sees patients at the Medical Group office at 1941 Rohlwing Road in Rolling Meadows. Men or women can call 847-618-0850 to schedule an appointment with him.

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