- Cervical screening (a smear test) checks the health of your cervix, which is the opening to your womb from your vagina.
- It’s not a test for cancer, it’s a test to help prevent cancer.
- All women and people with a cervix aged 25 to 64 should be invited by letter.
- During the screening appointment, a small sample of cells will be taken from your cervix.
- The sample is tested for changes to the cells of your cervix.
- Finding abnormal changes early means they can be monitored or treated so they do not get a chance to turn into cervical cancer.
- Approximately 2 weeks after screening, you will get your results by letter.
Cervical screening saves 5000 lives a year. It is not a test for cervical cancer, it is a screening test to detect abnormalities in the cells of the cervix at an early stage.
When you receive an invitation to cervical screening from the Practice, please, don’t ignore it. It takes just a few minutes and could save your life.
- First time being screen, or nervous? tell the Nurse/Doctor, and try to relax and distract your mind
- Worried about discomfort? Ask the Nurse/Doctor to use a smaller speculum
- Feeling embarrassed? Wear a skirt to your appointment as you can keep this on during the procedure
- Don’t want to go alone? Take a friend with you, to keep you company in the Waiting Room, and be there for you after the screening
- Undergone FGM/cutting in the past? Tell the Nurse/Doctor
- Not sure what to expect? Go to Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust or call 0808 802 800
Do not put off cervical screening. It’s one of the best ways to protect yourself from cervical cancer.