URMC is sponsoring a “Journey to Healthy Living” on Thursday, June 13, at the 9th Men’s Health Day at Mario’s Italian Steakhouse. Scripts sat down recently with event organizer Dr. Jean Joseph for an interview about the state of men’s health. We regret that tickets to the event have recently sold out (as of June 4), but still thought it important to share his perspectives with you.
Scripts: Why an event focused solely on men’s health?
Joseph: More than 10 years ago, we recognized that it’s not enough just to treat illness; we wanted to help men avoid it in the first place. So we came up with the idea of Men’s Health Day. Those of us in the medical profession see far too many patients who have waited until the last minute before seeking medical care – many of whom are suffering from an illness that could have been entirely avoided in the first place. Most of these patients are men. Heart disease, stroke and cancer take an alarming toll every year on men in our country. There is a reason why women in nursing homes significantly outnumber men: because men are dying five years earlier, leaving their friends and families to cope without them.
Joseph: If you discount genetics or environmental factors, there are many things men can do to live longer that they’re not doing now. What many are doing is indulging in a variety of self-destructive behaviors like smoking, unsafe sex, not wearing a seat belt, excessive drinking, and generally not getting regular checkups and ignoring their health until it’s too late. We’re not blaming guys. Some of the reasons for these are cultural; men are conditioned from an early age to understand that being reckless is “typical boy” behavior and that excessive partying and ignoring their health is manly. Women, on the other hand, have an advantage. Most have had regular checkups with a gynecologist since puberty and view being proactive about their health a positive thing.
Scripts: Are there simple steps that man can take to make a difference?
Joseph: Education and self-awareness are the first steps to reversing the statistics. Getting regular checkups and adopting a healthier lifestyle are the next. With rising health costs and competition for services, it’s more important than ever for men to stay healthy and vigorous in order to live satisfying and active lives for as long as possible. And today, as long as possible could mean 90 to 100 years of age – or even more.
By presenting Men’s Health Day, we are aiming to provide an informal forum where men will receive solid information and feel free to ask questions. If you are a man age 45 or older, I encourage you to attend. And if you are a woman who cares about an older man, please pass this information on and urge him to attend.
Again, here are the details:
Men’s Health Day, open to men ages 45 and up
Thursday, June 13, 2013, 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
Mario’s Italian Steakhouse, 2740 Monroe Avenue, Rochester, New York
Attendees will learn more about:
- Back pain
- Heart health
- Low testosterone
- Memory and nutrition
- Health care reform and how it will impact our community
Admission is free but space is limited and reservations are required. Call (585) 275-8762.
Jean Joseph, M.D., M.B.A., is a professor in the department of Urology and the Wilmot Cancer Center at the University of Rochester Medical Center. He is the head of the section of urologic laparoscopy and robotic surgery. Joseph is also the medical director of Patient- and Family-Centered Care at URMC.