Cancer screening from the learning disability and autism hub

What is cancer screening?

  • Looks for early signs of cancer in people without symptoms.
  • It can help spot cancers at an early stage when treatment is more likely to be successful.
  • Cancer screening is for people with no symptoms at all. If you have symptoms, tell your doctor as soon as possible.

Cervical Screening: smear test

A smear test is also called cervical screening.

Your cervix is inside your body at the top of the vulva, you cannot see it.

The smear test looks for a virus in the cervix called Human papillomavirus (HPV).

For a small number of women this virus can make the cells in the cervix go wrong and cause cancer.

You can find out more about having a smear test by watching the Surrey and Sussex Cancer Alliance video.

They have also produced a video with Makaton signing about Cervical Screening

Jodie was able to access her first cervical screening at the age of 40 by talking to her GP practice and her learning disability nurse to make sure the right reasonable adjustments were made for her.

The NHS have made a video on Accessing cervical screening with the right support for people with a learning disability.

There is an easy read guide about cervical screening (GOV.UK) and Beyond Words have created an easy read guide to cervical screening.

You can learn about smear tests for people with a learning disability on the Jo's Cervical Cancer Trust website.

Some people may be asked to go for another test after their smear test. This video from Surrey and Sussex Cancer Alliance explains more about this.

There is also a Makaton signed video about breast cancer recalling.


Breast screening

Breast screening is for women aged from 50 to 70.

The test checks if your breasts are healthy.

The test can find changes inside your breasts that are too small to see or feel.

These small changes can grow and become cancer.

You can find out more about breast screening.

Watch this video from Surrey and Sussex Cancer Alliance to find out more about breast screening.

They have also produced a video with Makaton signing about Breast screening

There is an easy read guide about breast screening and a Beyond Words have created an easy read guide about breast screening and bowel screening.

Macmillan Cancer Support has an easy read booklet about breast care for women.

Some people may be asked to go for another test after breast screening. This video from Surrey and Sussex Cancer Alliance explains more about this.

There is also a Makaton signed video about this breast cancer recalling.


Bowel cancer screening

Your bowel is inside your body.

It connects your stomach (tummy) to your bottom.

The bowel takes away waste your body does not need. This is called poo.

You will get a screening check to do at home when you are around 60.

You can find out more about bowel cancer screening and how to keep your bowels healthy.

Watch this video from Surrey and Sussex Cancer Alliance to find out more about bowel screening

They have also produced a video with Makaton signing about bowel screening

There is an easy read guide about bowel cancer screening and a Beyond Words have created an easy read guide about breast screening and bowel screening for people who prefer pictures without words.

Some people may be asked to go for another test after bowel screening. This video from Surrey and Sussex Cancer Alliance explains more about this.

There is also a Makaton signed video about coming for Colposcopy treatment.

Subscribe to our newsletters for latest news and events.