Cervical Cancer Screening

Pap tests can find abnormal cells on the cervix. Treating these cells early can stop cancer from developing.


Initiation of Screening

  • All women who are, or have ever been, sexually active should have a pap test
  • Screening should be initiated withing three years of first vaginal sexual activity

Screening Interval

  • Screening should be done annually until there are three consecutive pap tests
  • After three annual negative pap tests, screening should continue every two to three years
  • If a woman has not been screened in more than five years, she should be screened annually until there are three consecutive negative pap tests
  • Women with previous abnormal pap tests may be screened more frequently
  • Women who have sex with women should follow the same cervical screening regimen as women who have sex with men

Cessation of Screening

  • Screening may be discontinued after the age of 70 if there is an adequate negative screening history in the previous 10 years
  • Even if women have stopped having sex, they should continue to have the test

Please call us to book an appointment with your physician or with our nurse practitioner in the Cervical Cancer Screening Clinic if you are due for this important screening test.

Useful links | Canadian Cancer Society