Men are generally more careless about their health issues compared to women. This difference is reflected in their life expectancy. It was previously thought that men smoke more, drink more and work more.
In modern times this gender disequilibrium is more in equilibrium. But longevity is still less in men.
The most important factor that determines this is men seeking medical advice when it’s too late. I am a firm believer that medical interventions can change health outcomes. This is why establishing clinics for men is beneficial, as it helps to pick up diseases early.
Nowadays a medical condition called sleep apnoea is underdiagnosed. It is associated with higher incidence of heart attacks, high blood pressure, diabetes and strokes. There are many reasons as to why this condition goes untreated, including lack of information available to the public and lack of expertise in initial assessment by healthcare professionals. Sleep apnoea can be improved with more public awareness and education.
This disease/condition can appear with different symptoms which include tiredness, lack of energy, lack of concentration, and lack of libido. Most people attribute it to a busy lifestyle, poor work/life balance and increasing age. The sleep is also disturbed. Most of these people are diagnosed (mostly men) when their wives or partners complain about their snoring.
If you suffer from one of these symptoms, it is time to pay a visit to your doctor. The first step requires that you and your partner talk to your doctor about health history. The second step will be the examination. Your heart rate, blood pressure, and height and weight measurements will be taken. Your doctor will also listen to your heart and lungs and might want to do some blood tests to make sure you are not suffering from diabetes. Then, they will also complete a questionnaire called the Epsworth Sleepiness scale. If there is any suspicion of diagnosis, your doctor will refer you to the specialist who will arrange for further tests, which could include sleep studies. Once diagnosed, you will be offered different treatment options. With treatment, complications will decrease (risk of heart attack or stroke) and hopefully with time, you will feel better.
Dr Intesar H Malik Consultant Physician, Gisborne Hospital Private practice: Skin Deep Clinic, Gisborne 06 863 2688 | skindeepclinic.co.nz 188 Cobden Street, Gisborne