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Women's Health

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Health Screening: Finding Health Problems Early - Screening, Adult Women

Screening in adults is intended to identify diseases that may develop as you age. To help stay as healthy as possible, get routine checkups and have screenings that you and your doctor decide on.

How often women have the following tests depends on age, health, and things that make a specific disease more likely.

Tests that may be done include:

Women who are pregnant or trying to become pregnant may be screened for genetic conditions, gestational diabetes, sexually transmitted infections, and other conditions. For more information, see the topic Pregnancy.

Your age and tests

Some tests are only done at certain ages.

  • Experts recommend that all adults born from 1945 to 1965 get tested for hepatitis C.1, 2 People in this age group are more likely to have hepatitis C and not know it.
  • Before age 65, screening for osteoporosis isn't generally recommended. If you have risk factors, talk to your doctor about when to start screening.
  • For a screening checklist for women age 50 and older, see www.ahrq.gov/ppip/women50.htm.

Deciding about tests

It can be hard to decide whether you want to be screened for certain diseases or which type of test is best used. Combine medical information with your personal values to make a wise health decision.

Breast Cancer Screening: When Should I Start Having Mammograms?
Colon Cancer: Which Screening Test Should I Have?
HIV Testing: Should I Get Tested for Human Immunodeficiency Virus?
Osteoporosis: Should I Have a Dual-Energy X-Ray Absorptiometry (DXA) Test?
Pregnancy: Should I Have CVS (Chorionic Villus Sampling)?
STI Testing: Should I Get Tested for a Sexually Transmitted Infection?

Sometimes doctors automatically schedule routine tests because they think that's what patients expect. But sometimes research shows that testing may not be useful or worth the risks or costs. For more information, see Heart Tests: When Do You Need Them?

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: September 30, 2014
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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