Pelvic examinations and cervical cancer screenings are no longer recommended for most females under age 21 during routine health visits, but a new study has found that millions of young women are unnecessarily undergoing the tests, which can lead to false-positive testing, over-treatment, anxiety and needless cost.

Researchers at UC San Francisco and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimated that 1.4 million pelvic examinations and 1.6 million Pap tests performed on U.S. females 15 to 20 years old in a single year may have been medically unnecessary.



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