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I am over 65; why am I not invited for screening?

In Wales, individuals who can have cervical screening are invited up to the age of 64. The screening programme stops then because individuals who have no HPV (human papillomavirus) at this time are very unlikely to go on to develop cervical cancer in later years.

Although cervical cancer does occur in older individuals, it is often in people who have had no screening, or who have not had enough screening tests in the past. Even if all of your past tests were normal, it is very important that you report any unusual bleeding, discharge or other symptoms to your doctor. This includes:

  • Bleeding after sex, between periods or after the menopause
  • New or different vaginal discharge (change in colour, amount or consistency)
  • Lower tummy or back pains, or pain during sex

If you have never been for a cervical screening (smear) test you can ask at your doctor's surgery to have one, even if you are over the age of 65.