General Health Issues


  • Heart Disease & Stroke: These are major health problems in Australia. In general have a balanced diet; don't smoke; and exercise regularly. It is recommended that adults have their cholesterol checked at least every five years, and blood pressure taken yearly. Ask your doctor about a cardiovascular risk assessment.
  • Diabetes: It has been estimated that there are up to 700 000 people with diabetes in Australia half of which are unaware they are diabetic. Everyone over 40 years old or belonging to certain groups (e.g. family history of diabetes) should be checked. Ask about the Diabetes classes held at surgery and elsewhere.
  • Cancer: Some cancers are either preventable or can be detected early thus giving the best chance of cure or control.
  • Skin Cancer: Minimize sun exposure by avoiding the midday sun, dressing appropriately, using sunscreen, sunglasses and a hat. Any unusual skin lesion, especially if new, should be checked. Yearly skin checks are recommended.
  • Bowel Cancer:Selected testing for all patients may prevent this. Please see us if there is any history of bowel cancer in your family. Any change in bowel habit or bleeding from the bowel should be discussed with your doctor promptly.
  • Lung Cancer: Don’t smoke. Please see us if you would like advice on how to quit.
  • Breast Cancer: Like bowel cancer there is increased risk if this is in your family. Please speak to us about this. Mammograms to detect early breast cancer are of benefit for women age 45 and older.
  • Cervical Cancer: All women who have ever been sexually active should commence having Pap smears between the ages of 18 to 21 years or one to two years after first sexual intercourse whichever is later.
  • Liver Disease: Cirrhosis of the liver is a major health concern. Alcohol is an important cause. It is recommended that women drink no more than 1-2 standards drinks per day and men drink no more than 2-4 standard drinks per day. Hepatitis B and C are more recent causes of liver disease and are mainly spread through transfer of infected blood. High-risk groups include health workers and intravenous drug users. Please speak to us if you feel that you either at risk now or have been the past.
  • Asthma: Is often not recognized or under treated. If you have persistent or unrelieved wheezing , coughing, or shortness of breath you should be assessed for asthma and related conditions and optimal treatment. Smoking as always is strongly discouraged. Ask about the lung function testing the Asthma 3 Step Plan and Education through the Asthma Foundation.
  • Mental Health: Anxiety and depression are very common causes not only of distress but also of other health problems. They commonly present as other problems such as fatigue and tiredness, insomnia, headaches, backaches, "not coping", stress, and marital difficulties. Serious consequences include suicide and drug dependence. Anxiety and Depression are readily treatable with or without medication. Consult one of our doctors if you have any concerns about these. Ask about the 'Better Outcomes in Mental Health Care‘ the Healthy Minds program and public mental health services which can help make certain services such as counselling by a clinical psychologist affordable.
  • Sexual Health & Pregnancy: If you are planning pregnancy check your Rubella , and Varicella (chickenpox) status and discuss your plans and other issues well in advance. We are happy to arrange antenatal tests and investigations and to share your antenatal care with your antenatal clinic or obstetrician if desired. Sexually transmitted diseases such as Chlamydia and herpes are common. Hepatitis B and C, HIV and syphilis are also sexually transmitted. The best way to prevent these is to discuss these issues with you partner and to use condoms if you are not yet in a stable relationship.
  • Family Planning: Advice in all aspects of contraception and family planning is available.