5 Symptoms Men Ignore

When it comes to scheduling doctor visits, some men are notorious procrastinators. But this can be risky.

Routine preventive care can find diseases in the early stages when there are more options for treatment and better chances of treating the issue.

Furthermore, doctors report that their male patients ignore big and obvious health symptoms. With the following information, you can make sure that this isn't describing you.

Symptoms No Man Should Ignore

1. Chest Pain. You'd think this would be the last thing a man would ignore, but it happens all the time. Men report later that they thought that they were just out of shape, having a little indigestion, or feeling stressed.

Bottom line: Anyone experiencing chest tightness, chest pain, or shortness of breath needs medical attention.

2. A Big Belly. People who gain belly fat are at greater risk of serious health problems than are people who accumulate fat in other areas. Having a large amount of belly fat increases your risk of:

  • Heart disease
  • Stroke
  • Some types of cancer
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • Insulin resistance
  • High triglycerides
  • Low levels of HDL (high-density lipoprotein, or "good") cholesterol
  • Metabolic syndrome
  • Sleep apnea

Bottom line: A man who has gained belly weight should see his doctor.

3. Impotence. Impotence may be purely psychological, but it also could be a sign that a man has cardiovascular disease. If the arteries that supply blood to the penis aren't working right, those supplying blood to the heart and brain might not be working so well either. Coronary artery disease, high blood pressure, and cholesterol are often linked to erectile dysfunction.

Bottom line: Get over being embarrassed and see your doctor. You could be saving your life.

4. Frequent Urination. Urinating more frequently can be a sign of prostatitis—inflammation of the prostate gland.

Bottom line: If you are getting up two or three time a night to urinate, see your doctor.

5. Feeling Depressed. While depression is more common in women, men are far more likely to commit suicide. This may be because men are more reluctant to seek help. Depression is a real illness with real effects on your work, social, and family life, and could lead to suicide.

Bottom line: If you've been having feelings of extreme sadness, contact your doctor. Treatment is available. If you're contemplating suicide, call for emergency medical help or go the nearest emergency room. You can also call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-TALK (800-273-8255).

What to Do for a Longer, Healthier Life

Take charge of your health by making healthier lifestyle choices including:

  • Eating a healthy diet
  • Staying physically active
  • Quitting smoking
  • Getting regular checkups

Remember: If you think it's macho to avoid going to the doctor, it's not. And if you think ignoring the symptom it will go away, it will most likely actually get worse.

Note: Instead of seeking medical attention when you're at death's door, listen to your body and go to the doctor when something isn't right.




"Five Health Symptoms Men Shouldn't Ignore."  NHS Choices. 20, Jan. 2010. Web. 23 Apr. 2010. http://www.nhs.uk/Livewell/men1839/Pages/Menshealthweek.aspx

Mayo Clinic Staff. "Men's Health." MayoClinic.com. 23 Apr. 2010.  http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/mens-health/MC00013

Mayo Clinic Staff. "Belly Fat in Men: Why Weight Loss Matters." MayoClinic.com. Web. 23 Apr. 2010. http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/belly-fat/MC00054

Pifer, Jennifer and Sarah Edwards. " Five Symptoms Men Shouldn't Ignore." CNN.com. Web. 23 Apr. 2010. 23http://www.cnn.com/2008/HEALTH/06/12/mens.symptoms/index.html