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Annual Physical Exam Checklist

Written by:

David Mayer

Ensuring your well-being is a lifelong journey. The annual physical exam checklist serves as a crucial tool in this endeavor. More than a routine visit, it's a proactive step in understanding and maintaining your health. The exam provides an opportunity for early detection of potential issues, offers personalized advice, and allows you and your doctor to work together in preserving your overall health and well-being. At the Osprey PolyClinic we recognize the significance of your annual physical, and our comprehensive approach is designed to guide you through this essential part of self-care.

Annual Physical Exam Checklist by Age

The annual physical exam is not a one-size-fits-all procedure.  Each physical exam is tailored to individual needs, varying by age group and gender. For men and women, specific examinations and screenings are recommended based on age, ensuring a personalized touch. This nuanced approach addresses the unique health considerations and risks associated with different life stages, emphasizing the importance of a comprehensive and customized protocol to your health assessment. At the Osprey PolyClinic our commitment in administering the physical exam extends to providing specialized care that aligns with the diverse health needs of each patient.

List Age 18-39 Age 40-64 Age 65+
Blood pressure screening
Cholesterol screening
Blood glucose level testing
Body mass index calculation
Heart disease risk assessment
Diabetes screening
Immunizations update
Vision and hearing screening
Bone density screening
Testicular exam (males)
Pap smears (females)
Breast exam (females)
Physical exam
Dental exam
Prostate cancer screening (males)
Lung cancer exam
Osteoporosis screening
Colorectal screening
Abdominal aortic aneurysm screening
Hearing test (auditory)

Disclaimer: Please note that the table above is merely an overview of the annual physical exam checklist intended for informational purposes only. Specific screenings and vaccinations recommended by your doctor may vary based on your individual health factors, guidelines, and provider recommendations.

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annual physical exam checklist by age

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What Is Included in an Annual Physical Exam?

The physical exam is a comprehensive health assessment which goes beyond routine check-ups. It encompasses a thorough evaluation of various risk factors, including family medical history, vital signs, such as blood pressure and heart rate, a neurological exam, colorectal screening, eye and ear examinations, skin and extremities assessments, visual abnormalities, and crucial laboratory tests. This holistic approach ensures a detailed understanding of your overall health and provides a foundation for personalized recommendations.

annual physical exam checklist

While the specific components may vary, here's a general list of items included in the exam checklist:

1. Medical History

Discussion of past illnesses, surgeries, medical conditions and annual exams.

2. Vitals

Measurement of weight, blood pressure, heart rate, respiratory rate, and body temperature.

3. Heart and Lung Exam

Examination of the heart and lungs for any abnormalities or signs of cardiovascular issues or heart disease.

4. Abdominal Exam

Assessment of abdominal organs for any abnormal lumps, pain or other potential issues.

5. Neurological Exam

Evaluation of nervous system function, including reflexes and coordination.

6. Eye Exam

Vision assessment and examination of the eyes for any abnormalities

7. Ear, Nose, and Throat Exam

Examination of the ears, nose, and throat for hearing and respiratory health.

8. Skin Exam

Comprehensive examination of the skin for any irregularities or skin conditions.

9. Extremities Exam

Assessment of limbs for signs of swelling, joint issues, or circulation problems.

10. Laboratory tests

  • Complete blood count (CBC)
  • Chemistry panel (Creatinine, Blood Urea Nitrogen, etc.)
  • Cholesterol screening for cardiovascular disease
  • Blood sugar level for diabetes screening
  • Urinalysis

11. Vaccinations

Discussion and administration of recommended immunizations.

  • Flu vaccine every fall
  • Shingles vaccine (two doses after age 50)
  • Tetanus and diphtheria (Td) booster every 10 years
  • Pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccine (PPSV23) to protect against pneumonia, meningitis, and bloodstream infections (one dose after age 65 or after age 50 in people with certain health conditions)

These components collectively provide a thorough understanding of your health, allowing your doctor to detect early signs of any potential issues and offer personalized recommendations. Please note that the specific tests and screenings comprising the exam may vary based on individual factors, guidelines, and provider recommendations.

Female Annual Physical Exam Checklist

male annual physical exam checklist

The annual physical for women is a vital guidepost directing women through a personalized and comprehensive healthcare journey. Tailored to address the unique considerations of women, the exam is a crucial tool for maintaining overall health and well-being. It extends beyond routine tests, delving into areas specific to women, such as a breast exam and pelvic exam, that cater to women's health at different stages of their lives. From blood tests and reproductive health screenings to bone density and mental health assessments, the exam encompasses a spectrum of evaluations designed to empower women in making informed decisions about their risk factors. At the Osprey PolyClinic our primary care physicians go above and beyond routine protocols, ensuring that each woman receives the specialized care she deserves.

While specific components of testing for women may vary based on age and individual health factors, here's a general list of items usually included in the physical examination:

1. Pap Smear

Screening for cervical cancer and detection of abnormal cervical cells.

2. Pelvic Exam

Evaluation of reproductive organs and pelvic region for any abnormalities or concerns.

3. Breast Examination

Manual breast examination and discussion of breast health, including any lumps or abnormalities to screen for breast cancer.

4. Mammogram

X-ray screening of the breasts to detect breast cancer and benign breast conditions.

5. Bone Density Test (DEXA Scan)

Screening for body composition, bone health and early detection of osteoporosis.

6. Cholesterol Test

Blood tests to measure cholesterol levels and assess the risk of heart disease.

7. Thyroid Function Test

Blood test to evaluate the functioning of the thyroid gland.

8. Contraception Discussion

Discussion of contraceptive options and family planning.

9. Screening for Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs)

Tests for common STIs, ensuring reproductive health.

Additional items may be checked based on individual factors and age, and discussions about overall good health, lifestyle and family history may be included to offer personalized recommendations. It's important to note that specific screenings and vaccinations recommended may vary based on individual factors, guidelines, and doctor recommendations. Regular communication with your doctor is key to ensuring a successful annual physical exam.

Male Annual Physical Exam Checklist

annual physical exam checklist for female

The Male Annual Physical Exam serves as a compass for men navigating the intricacies of their health journey. Designed to address the unique health considerations of men at various stages of life, the male annual physical exam goes beyond a routine physical examination, providing a roadmap for comprehensive well-being and good health. From blood pressure monitoring and a testicular exam to screening for prostate cancer and discussions about disease control and vital signs, the male annual physical exam is a tailored guide aimed at empowering men to take charge of their health. At the Osprey PolyClinic we recognize the importance of the male annual physical exam, ensuring that each man receives specialized care reflective of his unique profile.

While specific components may vary based on age and individual health factors, here's a general list of items usually included in the male annual physical exam checklist:

1. Testicular Exam

Manual examination to check for lumps or abnormalities in the testicles.

2. Hernia Exam

Evaluation for the presence of hernias, particularly in the abdominal area.

3. Prostate Exam

Digital rectal exam (DRE) to assess the size and condition of the prostate gland.

4. Sexual Health Discussion

Discussion of sexual health concerns, including erectile dysfunction, sexually transmitted infections, and safe sex practices.

5. Prostate-Specific Antigen (PSA) Test

Blood test to measure PSA levels, aiding in the detection of prostate cancer.

6. Colon Cancer Screening

Recommendations for colonoscopy or other screening tests to assess risk of colon cancer

Additional items may be checked based on individual health factors and age, and discussions about good health, well-being and lifestyle may be included to offer personalized recommendations as part of the testing protocol. It's important to note that specific screenings and vaccinations recommended may vary based on individual factors, guidelines, and doctor recommendations. Regular communication with your doctor is crucial for ensuring a successful annual physical at the Osprey PolyClinic.

Tips for a Successful Annual Physical Exam

Ensuring a successful annual exam involves proactive steps that contribute to a thorough assessment of your health. Here are some key tips to make the most of your annual exam:

1. Plan Ahead

Schedule your annual physical well in advance. This ensures a convenient appointment that aligns with your schedule.

2. Gather Necessary Information

Prepare a list of symptoms or questions you want to discuss. For example, if you have concerns about heart disease, or you've observed decreased breath sounds, a proactive approach will facilitate a focused and productive discussion with your doctor.

3. Provide Accurate Medical History

Be ready to share details about your health history. Include past surgeries, allergies, current medications, and any chronic conditions, as well as details about close family members that may be relevant. The backstory helps your doctor understand your unique health narrative.

4. Bring Relevant Documents

Bring any medical records, test results, or imaging reports from your last visit. For women these may include the results of your last breast exam, or pelvic exam, or pap smears. For men the results of certain tests such as prostate exams and testicular cancer screenings will be helpful to your doctor in evaluating your health condition.

5. Dress Appropriately

Wear comfortable clothing that is easily adjustable. Think of it as choosing the right attire for a fitness class – something that allows for easy movement and facilitates physical examinations.

6. Be Honest and Open

Transparency is key. Be open about your lifestyle, habits, and any changes in your health. Kind of like sharing the plot twists in your health story, enabling your doctor to better understand and navigate your health journey.

7. Follow Fasting Instructions

If fasting blood work is requested, adhere to specific instructions regarding food and drink restrictions before your appointment.

8. Take Notes

Jot down important information, instructions, or recommendations given during the exam. This way, you’ll have a post-exam guide – a personal roadmap for your health journey.

9. Ask Questions

Don't hesitate to seek clarification on medical terms or recommendations. It's important to have a Q&A session with your provider – ensuring you leave the appointment with a clear understanding of your health status.

10. Follow-Up as Advised

If additional tests, screenings, or referrals are recommended, schedule and attend them promptly. Following through on these action items will ensure that you stay on track for optimal health.

Approach your annual physical exam checklist by age with these tips, and you'll orchestrate a symphony of proactive health management.


Your annual physical exam is not merely a routine check-up; it's your proactive investment in your long-term health. Embrace the opportunity to engage in open dialogue with your doctor and other healthcare providers, prioritize preventive care, and tailor your wellness journey with personalized screenings. At the Osprey PolyClinic we champion this holistic approach, ensuring a tailored approach that transcends the ordinary, becoming the cornerstone of a healthy, informed, and empowered life. Take charge, schedule your annual exam, and embark on a journey of well-being today.

David Mayer
David Mayer
President and COO

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