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How often should I get a Pap test?

Guidelines state that if you are between 21 and 30 years old, you should have a Pap smear every three years as long as it is normal. If you are 30 to 65, then you can have a Pap smear every five years as long as you have HPV testing with it. Pap smears are not recommended in women under 21 or over 65 unless you are at high risk.

The Pap test helps identify women at risk for developing cervical cancer. Women 21-30 should get a Pap test every three years. Women over 30 should get a combined Pap test and HPV test every five years. If HPV testing is not available, they may get a Pap test every three years. Screening may be stopped for women over age 65 who have been adequately screened with normal results and are not at high risk for cervical screening. If you have had your cervix and uterus removed, ask your healthcare provider if you need to continue screening.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.