- Vaccination is recommended for females (and males) under the age of 26 for human papillomavirus (HPV), a sexually-transmitted infection that can cause cervical cancer.
- If you don’t have a family history of cervical cancer, a Pap test is recommended every three to five years as long as the results are consistently normal. Additionally, testing for HPV is also available.
- If you have a history of cervical cancer or have an abnormal Pap test, talk to your doctor about how often you should get screened.
- If you start having abnormal or heavy vaginal bleeding, talk to your gynecologist about getting screened for endometrial cancer.
- Procedures such as pelvic ultrasounds and in-office biopsies can help detect this treatable cancer.
- It is recommended that women over 50 receive annual mammograms.
- Some doctors recommend annual mammograms starting at age 40 to increase early detection, especially if you are at a high risk of developing breast cancer.
- If at any age you feel a suspicious lump or mass that does not go away with your normal menstrual cycle, please schedule a breast exam.
- The U.S. Preventative Services Task Force now recommends low-dose CT scans of the chest to screen for lung cancer.
- If you are a current or former smoker, are age 55-79, have a 30 pack-year history of smoking, and would be willing and able to undergo curative treatment if a lung cancer was found, you should consider getting screened for lung cancer.
- When diagnosed early, the five-year survival rate for colorectal cancer is ninety percent.
- If you are over the age of 50 and do not have a family history of colon cancer, you should get a colonoscopy every ten years as long as the results are consistently normal.
- If you have a history of colorectal cancer or have abnormal colonoscopy results, talk to your doctor about how often you should get screened.
Dr. Jennine Varhola, OB/GYN
Dr. Jennine Varhola is a board-certified Obstetrician/Gynecologist at The Oregon Clinic. She specializes in full-spectrum obstetrics, abnormal Paps, minimally invasive surgery, birth control, and preventative well-woman care.