Your cervical screening results are usually sent to you in a letter from the screening service - not the GP. Sometimes you may be asked to call your GP to get the results.

When your results should arrive

You should get your results within 14 days but they can take longer to arrive. 

If you have waited longer than you expected, call your GP surgery to see if they have any updates.

  • Try not to worry if your results are taking a long time to get to you.
  • It does not mean anything is wrong, and most people will have a normal result.

What your results mean

Your results letter will explain what was tested for and what your results mean.

Most people will have a normal result. This means you do not need any further tests and you'll be invited for screening again in 3 or 5 years.

Sometimes you'll be asked to come back in 3 months to have the test again. This does not mean there's anything wrong – it's because the results were unclear.

If you have an abnormal result

Your results letter should explain what will happen next.

You may need:

  • no treatment
  • another cervical screening test in 1 year
  • a different test to look at your cervix (colposcopy)

There are different kinds of abnormal result depending on if your sample was tested for:

  • abnormal cell changes in your cervix – left untreated, this could turn into cancer
  • HPV – some types of HPV can lead to cell changes in your cervix and cancer

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