A Answers (2)
Aurora Health Care answeredPap testing should start at age 21 and should continue to at least age 65. If you are between ages 21 and 29, you should be tested at least every 3 years. If you are age 30 or older, you should be tested at least every 5 years. Pap testing may be done more often or may be stopped based on age, risk factors, and your provider's recommendations.
Kevin Windom, MD, Obstetrics & Gynecology, answered
The Pap test recommendations have recently changed so don't be surprised if your doctor tells you something different. All women need their first test at age 21 and at least every other year until age 30. From 30-65 women need Pap tests at least every 3 years. You can quit at 65 years old if you have no risk factors and at least a decade of normal Pap tests.
I am a little different with my patients. I do the first pap at age 21 or 3 years after their first sexual encounter. At age 30 I start testing for HPV and if a patient has three normal Paps in a row and has low risk for cervical cancer then it is ok to have them every 2-3 years. Just remember that you need to see your healthcare provider every year regardless of having a Pap or not having one.