Breast and Cervical Cancer Screening
Screening Guidelines for All Ages of Women
Regular screening for breast and cervical cancer is important for good health. Guidelines for regular screening and early detection of breast and cervical cancer are as follows:
Mammography Screening Recommendations
|Age||American Cancer Society||US Preventative Services Task Force||BreastCare|
|Under 40||Not recommended||Not recommended||Not recommended|
|40-49||40-44: The decision should be up to each woman. Women should talk with their doctor about the risks and benefits.
|The decision should be up to each woman. Women should talk with their doctor about the risks and benefits.||The decision should be up to each woman. Women should talk with their doctor about the risks and benefits.|
|50 and older||50-54: Annually
55 and over: Every two years
|Every two years||Every one to two years|
Women at high risk: Women with a higher risk of breast cancer should talk with their doctors about the best approach for them. This might mean starting mammograms when you are younger, having extra tests or having more frequent exams.
Age-Appropriate Screening Guidelines for Good Cervical Health*
- Cervical cancer screening should begin at age 21. Women less than age 21 should not be tested.
- Women between ages 21 and 29 should have a Pap test every three years. There is also a test called the HPV test. HPV testing should not be used in this age group unless it is needed after an abnormal Pap test result.
- Women between the ages of 30 and 65 should have a Pap test and an HPV test (called “co-testing”) every five years. This is the preferred approach, but it is also OK to have a Pap test alone every three years.
- Women over age 65 who have had regular cervical cancer testing with normal results should not be tested for cervical cancer. Once testing is stopped, it should not be started again. Women with a history of a serious cervical pre-cancer should continue to be tested for at least 20 years after that diagnosis, even if testing continues past age 65.
- A woman who has had her uterus removed (and also her cervix) for reasons not related to cervical cancer and who has no history of cervical cancer or serious pre-cancer should not be tested.
- A woman who has been vaccinated against HPV should still follow the screening recommendations for her age group.
*2012 Consensus Guidelines-American Cancer Society (ACS), American Society for Colposcopy and Cervical Pathology (ASCCP), American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP)