As noted earlier, the advent of Pap smear screening for cervical cancer has halved the death rate from the disease since 1980. Make sure to follow the guidelines for screening, but keep in mind that these are general guidelines designed for the population as a whole. There may be reasons to have screening (or to not screen) for you as an individual that are not covered under these recommendations. It's also important to note that screening tests are meant for people who are asymptomatic—who have no symptoms of a disease. If you have any of the symptoms listed earlier, further tests may be considered beyond a screening Pap smear. If you are unsure if you need these tests, check out these guidelines for cervical cancer screening .
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