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Cervical Cancer Screening

Upstate offers cervical cancer screenings. For more information or to schedule an appointment, please call 315 464-HOPE (4673) to speak with an Upstate Cancer Center representative.

Screening is done to find and treat a health problem early. Screening tests are given to people who have no symptoms, but who may be at high risk for certain health issues.

Screening Tests

Screening tests to help detect cervical cancer include:

  • Pap test—A sample of cells in and around the cervix are taken and tested. The samples are checked for abnormal growth or cancer.
  • Human papillomavirus (HPV) test—The same sample of cells can be used to detect HPV infection.
  • Pelvic exam—The vagina, cervix, uterus, fallopian tubes, and ovaries are checked. This is done by hand.

Screening Guidelines

Screening guidelines vary among medical groups. Screening also depends on a person's health. In general, for women who have not had cervical intraepithelial neoplasia (CIN) 2 or higher in the past) they are:

  • Begin PAP tests at age 21 to 25 years.
  • Have a Pap AND HPV test every 5 years for women aged 25 to 65 years. They may continue with Pap tests every 3 years, if desired.
  • For women aged 65 years and older—stop having Pap and HPV tests if tests have been normal for the past 10 years.

Pap tests may be advised more often for those with:

  • Abnormal results
  • A weak immune system due to a health condition (such as HIV) or medicine
  • Exposure to diethylstilbestrol (DES) while in the womb
  • History of cervical dysplasia or cervical cancer


  • Cervical cancer. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: https://www.dynamed.com/condition/cervical-cancer.
  • Cervical cancer screening. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: https://www.dynamed.com/prevention/cervical-cancer-screening.
  • Cervical cancer screening (PDQ). National Cancer Institute website. Available at: https://www.cancer.gov/types/cervical/patient/cervical-screening-pdq.
  • Guidelines for the prevention and early detection of cervical cancer. American Cancer Society website. Available at: https://www.cancer.org/cancer/cervical-cancer/detection-diagnosis-staging/cervical-cancer-screening-guidelines.html.
  • Hu, Z. and Ma, D. The precision prevention and therapy of HPV-related cervical cancer: new concepts and clinical implications. Cancer Medicine, 2018; 7 (10): 5217-5236.