Good reply by PhoebeR...
The age in England for NHS cervical screening has been 25 for around 8 years.
During the 'Jade Goody effect' there was pressure on the NHS from organisations such as Marie Stopes International to reduce the age but this was resisted because of the reasons given below....
'Until 2003, the NHS cancer screening service started inviting women for cervical testing at age 20. But the age was raised to 25 after research emerged of its negative effects.
Writing in the programme's 2008 annual review, Professor David Luesley, a specialist in gynaecological cancer at the University of Birmingham, said changes to the cervix are common in women under 25 but they are mostly natural and harmless and cause no symptoms.
However, if detected at screening, they result in unnecessary investigation and treatment. The removal of tissue from the cervix in these procedures also increases the risk of a later premature birth, especially for younger women.
Professor Luesley said there were fewer than 50 cases of cancer a year in the under 25s (1.7 per cent of all cervical cancers in women under 70) and fewer than five deaths. Women with symptoms (eg, bleeding) should go for a check-up but screening was targeted at women without symptoms'