Make a checkup at The Doctor part of your new year’s resolution. Here’s why…

At The Doctor, we emphasize the importance of routine healthcare. We encourage everyone to make an annual checkup a part of your healthcare plan, especially LGBT individuals.

Here’s what we recommend:

  • HPV. The virus that is more common than any other STI. HPV can cause cervical cancer in woman and anal cancer in gay men. Everyone needs to be checked annually for HPV, and gay men specifically need an anal PAP smear to check anal warts (condyloma) and anal cancer.

    If you have precancerous cells or anal warts, you need a specialized treatment with a laser called an IRC. The Doctor performs this procedure in house at our office, so we screen, detect, and treat early-stage anal cancer all right here here in one comfortable place.

  • Anal cancer. The HPV virus causes anal cancer in men and cervical cancers in women. We can screen, detect, and treat early-stage cancer right here in our office.

  • Colon and prostate cancer. Annual screenings for our patients start at age 40, unless you have a history of colon polyps or colorectal, breast, ovarian or uterine cancers in your family. Those with such a history need to get screened earlier, so be sure to let your provider know if you have a family history of cancers.

  • HIV. At The Doctor, we follow the CDC’s HIV testing guidelines that recommend that all adults ages 13-64 get regular screenings. Our rapid HIV tests allow readings within 20 minutes onsite from our onsite lab. As always, we use up-to-date testing methods to provide the best care possible—a rapid 4th generation test that detects HIV after only 10 days of exposure.

  • Screening for other sexually transmitted infections. It is important for everyone, and especially LGBT men and women, to be tested frequently for STIs. The frequency of your specific testing regimen is determined based on your sexual history.

    Some clinics only test for STIs through urine, but The Doctor takes a more comprehensive approach. For our LGBT population, we test for Gonorrhea and Chlamydia at three sites—the throat, penis or vagina, and anus because we understand how you have sex.

Other things we check during an annual exam:

  • Cholesterol. You should have it checked every year.

  • Blood pressure. Should be checked at least once every year.

  • Immune system. We include Vitamin D testing, which is a signal marker for the health of your immune system.

  • Diabetes. A simple blood test called Hemoglobin A1C allows us to diagnose pre-diabetes or diabetes so that we can help you keep your blood sugar levels under control.

  • Body Fat. We measure percent of body fat/lean muscle and body mass index.

  • Heart Disease. Our office staff will take an EKG (electrocardiogram) to test for all kinds of heart conditions.

After we complete your screenings, your provider will discuss the results, treatment plan, and follow up needs with you.

Most of your results are available on site within a few minutes after your testing. For results that require more time, we’ll get you scheduled for a follow up exam either in person or virtually with our convenient telemedicine option that allows you to go through your results whenever and wherever you prefer.

Schedule your specialized annual checkup at The Doctor now and start your year on a good note.

Marc Vinson