Routine Health Screening Guidelines for Women – U.S. Preventative Services Task Force (USPSTF) Guidelines

shutterstock_152788025I think it’s important to have preventative screening exams to identify potential health problems before they develop or worsen.  It is often challenging to keep up with the changes in the preventative screening guidelines, so I thought I’d include these guidelines that are the most current as of August 2012 from the USPSTF.

Other guidelines from the American Medical Association, Canadian Task Force on Preventative Health Care, American Cancer Society, American College of Preventative Medicine and National Institutes of Health exist and may have other recommendations.  These may be used as a guide but the time of screening may change depending on certain risk factors or the recommendations of your individual healthcare provider.

Age 21:  The USPSTF strongly recommends screening for cervical cancer in women beginning within 3 years of the onset of sexual activity or by age 21 who have a cervix.

Age 25 and younger:  Routine screening for all sexually active women and other asymptomatic women at increased risk of chlamydial infection.

Age 40:  Screening mammography, with or without clinical breast examination (CBE) every 1-2 years for women starting at age 40 if there are no other risk factors for breast cancer such as family history.

Age 45:  Screening for high cholesterol and treat abnormal lipids in people who are at increased risk of heart disease.

Age 50:  Start screening at age 50 or older for colorectal cancer (earlier if there are increased risks such as family history of first degree relative who is diagnosed with colon or rectal cancer before age 60).

Age 65:  Women age 65 and older should be screened routinely for osteoporosis.  Screening should begin at age 60 for women at increased risk of becoming osteoporotic.

This document is for informational purposes only, and should not be considered medical advice for any individual patient.  If you have questions please contact your medical provider.


I hope that you have found this information useful.  Wishing you the best of health,

Scott Rennie, DO



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