Published data on the associations between tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-α) promoter -308G>A and -238G>A polymorphisms and cervical cancer risk are inconclusive. To derive a more precise estimation of the relationship, a meta-analysis was performed. Data were collected from MEDLINE and PubMed databases. Crude odds ratios (ORs) with 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were calculated in a fixed/random effect model. 13 separate studies including 3294 cases and 3468 controls were involved in the meta-analysis. We found no association between TNF-α-308G>A polymorphism and cervical cancer in overall population. In subgroup analysis, significantly elevated risks were found in Caucasian population (A vs. G: OR=1.43, 95% CI=1.00- 2.03; AA vs. GG: OR=2.09, 95% CI=1.34-3.25; Recessive model: OR=2.09, 95% CI=1.35-3.25) and African population (GA vs. GG: OR=1.53, 95% CI=1.02-2.30). An association of TNF-α-238G>A polymorphism with cervical cancer was found (A vs. G: OR=0.61, 95% CI=0.47-0.78; GA vs. GG: OR=0.59, 95% CI=0.45-0.77; Dominant model: OR=0.59, 95% CI=0.46-0.77). When stratified by ethnicity, similar association was observed in Caucasian population (A vs. G: OR=0.62, 95% CI=0.46-0.84; GA vs. GG: OR=0.59, 95% CI=0.43-0.82; Dominant model: OR=0.60, 95% CI=0.44-0.83). In summary, this meta-analysis suggests that TNF-α-238A allele significantly decreased the cervical cancer risk, and the TNF-α-308G>A polymorphism is associated with the susceptibility to cervical cancer in Caucasian and African population.