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Cervical Cancer Screening (PDQ®)

Health Professional Version
Last Modified: 04/10/2014

Changes to This Summary (04/10/2014)


Revised text to state that the benefits of screening women younger than 21 years are small because of low prevalences of lesions that will progress to invasive cancer; screening is not beneficial in women older than 65 years if they have had a history of recent negative tests (cited Moyer et al. as reference 3).

Description of the Evidence

Added text to state that testing for low-risk human papillomavirus types does not identify women at risk for cervical intraepithelial neoplasia 2 or 3 (cited Thomsen et al. as reference 45 and Castle et al. as reference 46).

Added text to state that women aged 20 years and younger have a very low risk of cervical cancer and a high likelihood that cervical cell abnormalities will go away on their own (cited Saslow et al. as reference 68).

This summary is written and maintained by the PDQ Screening and Prevention Editorial Board, which is editorially independent of NCI. The summary reflects an independent review of the literature and does not represent a policy statement of NCI or NIH. More information about summary policies and the role of the PDQ Editorial Boards in maintaining the PDQ summaries can be found on the About This PDQ Summary and PDQ NCI's Comprehensive Cancer Database pages.