HJAR Mar/Apr 2020

46 MAR / APR 2020 I  HEALTHCARE JOURNAL OF ARKANSAS DIALOGUE COLUMN UROLOGY WHAT is it about a checklist that makes us behave better? “Whether running to the store to buy ingredients for a cake, preparing an airplane for takeoff, or evaluating a sick per- son in the hospital,” says Dr. Atul Gawande, author of The Checklist Manifesto, “if you miss just one key thing, you might as well not have made the effort at all.” Not all lists are created equal, but experts agree, lists do two things that our complex psyches often fail to value properly: Lists take big, dynamic enterprises and break them into self-contained parts. Lists offer proof that we have achieved, if only one part of a larger ongoing campaign. Lists are depended upon by health care providers in campus hospitals and large medical complexes more and more. They are just as important for an individual pa- tient’s own managed care. Acentury ago, few Americans saw the doctor except for emer- gencies. Today, we talk about patients’health along a continuum of care, and annual physi- cals are rewarded (or at least free) for many health policies. For men over the age of 50, routine uro- logical checkups are just as important. This year, all men are encouraged to check off the boxes in the following 10-point check- up, beginning with the Prostate-Specific An- tigen test. PSA (Prostate-Specific Antigen) Men’s blood contains a protein produced exclusively by the prostate called PSA. El- evated PSA levels can be seen with prostate inflammation, benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), or prostate cancer. Prostate cancer is the single most common diagnosis for men across all types of cancer, and the second leading cause of cancer-related deaths among men who don’t smoke. 1 Total Testosterone This test measures testosterone levels in the blood. Low levels may cause men to ex- perience fatigue, weight gain, hair loss, and sexual problems. Urinalysis This is a urine test that can detect a wide variety of disorders such as diabetes, kidney disease, and urinary tract infections. CBC (Complete Blood Count) This blood test is used to help evaluate overall health, and detect a variety of disor- ders, such as infections and anemia. It mea- sures your white and red blood cell counts, hemoglobin, platelets, and more. THE HEALTH CHECKLIST MANIFESTO When it comes to taking care of your health, follow this 10-point checklist to a T.