Screening guidelines from the American Cancer Society and vaccination recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

Age GroupScreening and Prevention Recommendations
9 - 26 years oldGet the HPV vaccine
Under 21 years oldFirst Pap test within 3 years of having vaginal sex OR no later than 21 years old.
21 - 29 years oldRegular Pap test every year or liquid-based Pap test every 2 years
30 years old and overRegular or liquid-based Pap test AND the HPV test. Screening can be done every 3 years* for women with normal results on both tests.
70 years old and overWomen with 3 normal Pap tests in a row and no abnormal Pap test results in the last 10 years may choose to stop screening. Talk to your doctor.

*Another option for women 30 years and older with 3 normal Pap tests results in a row is to get screened every 2 to 3 years with the Pap. Women should discuss these options with a doctor


  • Women who have had removal of the uterus and cervix may choose to stop having cervical cancer screening, unless the surgery was done as treatment for cervical cancer or precancer. Women who have had a hysterectomy without removal of the cervix should continue to follow the guidelines above
  • Women of any age who have a weakened immune system, are infected with HIV, or who were exposed DES when their mother was pregnant with them should be screened annually.
  • Girls and young women between 9-26 should get the HPV vaccine.
  • If you’re under 30, get screened with a Pap test.
  • If you’re 30 or over, get an HPV test along with your Pap test.