The fact of the matter is that we all get ill from time to time be it a seasonal cold or cancer or anything in between and, like a seasonal cold, there are many things we can do to minimise the damaging effects of cancer.
I’ve been getting out and about raising awareness of prostate cancer - how it affects men and their families - for around ten years now. In 2010 I lost my husband to the disease and knowing early diagnosis is crucial to good outcomes I started to volunteer with Prostate Cancer UK.
It would be untruthful of me to say that a mammogram is comfortable. It isn't. It's uncomfortable and no matter how EXCELLENT and quick staff are at manipulating your breasts and body into position for the mammogram it does feel a bit strange being the only topless person in the room! A bit like going to a fancy dress party and finding you're the only one in fancy dress.
It's true, my first ever smear potentially saved my life. Being in your 20s carefree, living your life you don’t think about these ‘routine’ things the doctors encourage you to go to. I put off my smear, not due to any fears. Life just got in the way of getting round to booking the appointment.
Hi, I'm Kate; I'm 65; and I live alone in Leeds. I shall get my state pension this year and I have cancer. I want to encourage you to get screened and to keep pestering your GP if you have any unexplained pain.
Looking back on the whole experience, I wish I had been more proactive in booking my cervical smear test. I would advise you, if you’ve received your letter, to not let your worries (or this pandemic) delay your test.