Cervical Cancer Screening

What is cervical cancer screening?

Cervical cancer screening is performed by a Pap test – a swab of the cervix to check for cell changes. Although some people find the test uncomfortable, it is not painful and is usually very quick. Pap tests are normally performed by your family physician.

What causes cervical cancer?

Cervical cancer is caused by the Human Papillomavirus (HPV). HPV is usually transmitted by sexual contact.

Who should have a Pap test?

All women over the age of 21 who have ever been sexually active should have a Pap test every 1-3 years, even if you are no longer sexually active.

If you have had a hysterectomy, please make an appointment to find out if you still require regular Pap tests.

Click here (PDF) to download a brochure from the Canadian Cancer Society on the importance of having regular Pap tests.