Why men don't do check ups


When talking to our male colleagues and family and friends, it appeared that most of them do not go to medical check ups – some even actively avoid them out of fear of a negative diagnosis. In an online study, we tested whether this holds true for a bigger group of people, and found the following:

While men find it sensible to regularly be checked up by a doctor for prevention (who doesn't?), this does not seem to make them go there too.


Of course, there is always a difference between what you know you should do and what you actually do. However, we also found in qualitative interviews that – compared to women – it is more difficult for men to get into a check-up routine. Most young women have their first visit at the gynaecologist together with their mothers and automatically get into a routine of regular visits to the doctor. For men on the other hand, check ups only get relevant in their mid-thirties, when life habits are quite fixed already.

If the appointment was made for me, I would also go there.
— Cured Intestinal Cancer Patient

An interesting hint on how to make it easier for everyone to go to check-ups, we got from one of the interview partners. He mentioned that for him the actual obstacle is making the appointment. Once that is done, he will also keep it. So, a relevant Health Service Design question would be: 

How might we lower the threshold for male cancer check ups?

Do you have good examples where this challenge is already solved? Then please leave a comment.