Cancer Screening Recommendations

Cancer screenings increase the likelihood of detecting some cancers early.

Read through the screening recommendations below for more information. Please speak with your physician to determine if you have additional factors that would require more frequent or additional cancer screening. 

For additional information on cancer screening, please visit the American Cancer Society or the National Comprehensive Cancer Network.

Breast Cancer Screenings
  • Annual mammograms beginning at age 40
  • Personal breast awareness.
  • Clinical breast exam: Ages 20-39 - as part of periodic health exam, every three years. Ages 40 and up - prior to mammogram as part of a periodic health exam annually.
Cervical Cancer
  • Cervical screening should begin at age 21, but preferred tests and frequency vary by age.
  •  For ages 21-29, a Pap test should be performed every 3 years. For ages 30-65, a Pap and HPV test should be performed every 5 years. 
  •  Women can stop screening at age 66 with adequate negative prior screening (more than 3 consecutive negative Pap tests within 10 years or more than 2 consecutive negative HPV and Pap tests within 10 years (most recent within 5 years) OR after hysterectomy. 
Colorectal Cancer
  • Beginning at age 50, men and women should follow one of the following exam schedules: 
  • Fecal occult blood test - annually
  • Flexible sigmoidoscopy - five years
  • Double contrast barium enema - five years
  • Colonoscopy - ten years
  • CT colonography - five years
Lung Cancer
  • If you are 55 to 74 years old, in fairly good health, have at least a 30-pack/year history of smoking and are either still smoking or have quit less than 15 years ago, your physician may consider low-dose CT screening.
  • You should get a low-dose CT every year, up until the age of 74, as long as you remain in good health. You should also receive counseling to stop smoking. 
Prostate Cancer
  • PSA: Men between the ages of 45 and 75 should discuss their risk with their doctor. African-American men and those with immediate family history are at a higher risk. If PSA is greater than 1, repeat every one to two years. If less than 1, repeat every two to four years. If 75 years or older and very healthy, may consider continuing PSA (if greater than 3) every 1-2 years. If PSA is greater than 4, may consider biopsy.
  • Digital Rectal Exam (DRE): This should not be done as a stand-alone test, but rather in conjunction with a PSA test.