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Wait... what cancer screenings?

Not sure which routine cancer screenings you should schedule? We are here to help! Check Cancer Screening 101 or look at the chart below for information on the cancer screenings you need at every age. Individuals from each age group should also be following the recommendations of the previous age group, meaning that the screenings you start in your 20s should continue as you age.

In addition to the screenings listed below, visit your dentist every six months so that signs of oral cancer can be detected during your regular visit.

Be sure to ask your health care provider about screenings at your next visit—your needs may differ based on your personal risk factors and family health history.

AGE WOMEN
20s
  • Begin regular cervical cancer screening at age 21. Have a Pap test every 3 years.
  • If you haven’t been vaccinated against the human papillomavirus (HPV) talk to your doctor about getting vaccinated now. 
  • All adults ages 18-79 should be screened for hepatitis C, a leading cause of liver cancer. 
  • Have your health care provider examine your skin every year or visit a dermatologist.
30s
  • Screen for cervical cancer with a Pap test combined with an HPV test every 5 years, or a Pap test every 3 years.
40s
  • Get screened annually for breast cancer.
  • Begin colorectal cancer screening at age 45. Talk to your doctor about screening test options.
50s – 80s
  • If you’re a heavy smoker or former smoker, ask your doctor about getting screened for lung cancer.

 

AGE MEN
20s – 30s
  • Perform monthly testicular self-exams to know what is normal for you. 
  • If you haven’t been vaccinated against the human papillomavirus (HPV) talk to your doctor about getting vaccinated now. 
  • All adults ages 18-79 should be screened for hepatitis C, a leading cause of liver cancer. 
  • Have your health care provider examine your skin every year or visit a dermatologist.
40s
  • Begin colorectal cancer screening at age 45. Talk to your doctor about screening test options.
50s – 80s
  • Talk to your doctor about screening for prostate cancer.
  • If you’re a heavy smoker or former smoker, ask your doctor about getting screened for lung cancer.

 

The (screening) choice is yours

If you missed a colonoscopy and are reluctant to get your appointment back on the books, ask your health care provider about other screening options. There are approved stool-based tests available that can be done without leaving your home.

Please note, however, that not everyone is a candidate for this kind of test (based on risk and other factors), and a positive test would need to be followed up with a colonoscopy. Your insurance plan may require a co-pay for an at-home test or a colonoscopy.

 

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