Women's Health Screenings You Should Not Skip

Posted on: 28 October 2018

Regular and routine health care and health screenings are an important part of any woman's health routine. However, because everybody tends to have a busy life and schedules that are already tough to manage, many women tend to skip their preventive care appointments and just go to the doctor when problems arise.

There are many reasons that you should not choose to approach your healthcare this way, namely the fact that you could develop severe and advanced health conditions that could otherwise be detected early or prevented entirely. Get to know some of the women's health screenings that you should most definitely not skip out on. Then, you can be sure you are doing everything possible to protect your health now and in the future.

Pap Smear

One of the routine health screenings that you should not skip out on as a woman is a pap smear. The purpose of a pap smear is to look for abnormal cells in the cervix. Abnormalities in these cells can indicate precancerous or cancerous cells in the cervix. The sooner cervical cancer cells are detected, the better treatment outcomes and the easier the treatment process can be. 

Generally, the United States Preventive Services Task Force recommends that a woman gets a pap smear a minimum of every three years. However, if you have ever had an abnormal pap smear, your doctor will likely recommend that you get a pap smear every year.

If you have never had an abnormal pap smear result, are over 30, and you would rather not have to go in every three years, you could instead get a combination of an HPV test and a pap smear at the same time. As long as both sets of test results come back clear, you can opt to only get screened every five years instead of every three. 


Getting a regular mammogram is another one of those screenings that you should not skip out on if you are a woman. When you reach the age of 45, according to the American Cancer Society, you should begin getting regular mammograms. If you have a family history of breast cancer, or if you have a known genetic predisposition to breast cancer, you may want to begin getting annual mammograms earlier than 45. 

Mammograms, of course, screen for abnormalities in the breast tissue that could be indicative of breast cancer. When it comes to treating breast cancer, early detection is key. When the cancer is still in the first stages, a lumpectomy (removal of the cancerous mass) or a mastectomy (removal of the breast) may be all you need to treat the condition. 

Breast cancer in the later stages may have metastasized to other parts of the body, particularly through the lymph nodes located near the breasts. This is a much more complicated type of cancer to treat and can involve chemotherapy, radiation therapy, immunotherapy, surgery, and more treatments to try to battle the widespread cancer. 

Now that you know some of the women's health screenings that you should never skip, you can schedule your next screening appointment with a doctor like James L. Holzhauer as soon as possible.