Cervical Cancer: the silent killer

Cervical Cancer is a killer; there’s no doubt about it. The sixth biggest silent killer in the UK, Cervical Cancer can be

Cervical Cancer - fullissue.com

Cervical Cancer - fullissue.com

treated if found early enough, through the likes of a cervical smear test.

There are two different types of Cervical Cancer- Squamos and Adenocarcinoma, and addictions such as smoking can bring this type of cancer on. Several different sexual partners at a young age can also cause it, with most people affected over 50 years old, although anyone can get Cervical Cancer in their life.

This killer can often go undetected, especially if regular smear test appointments haven’t been attended. However, some of the early symptoms include: a change of cells shown in a smear test, bleeding after sex, and bleeding between periods. Later symptoms can include: pelvic pain, increased vaginal discharge, and feeling uncomfortable pain during sex.

In 2008 and 2009, a new Cervical Cancer injection was introduced, to protect women against it. This came shortly after the celebrity Jade Goody lost her life to Cervical Cancer, at the age of just 27 years old. The shock of her death shook the world, and encouraged many women who previous hadn’t attended their smear test appointments to do so. Just a year after her death, in 2009, the number of women between the ages of 25 to 29 who asked for a smear test shot up to 37,000; a third more than previous years.

Throughout Jade’s life, she had many symptoms, although sometimes they were brushed aside. This is why she wanted to leave a legacy behind, for women to know the symptoms and be aware of the killer disease. This is how Jade’s cancer developed over several years, and although it’s not always as clear-cut as this, these are some of the signs and symptoms to look out for:

  • In 1997, Jade Goody was 15 years old, and she had to have abnormal cells removed form her cervix. The NHS deems this as something incredibly rare.
  • In 2004, Jade underwent treatment for an ovarian cyst.
  • In 2006, Jade was rushed to hospital with suspected Bowel Cancer and Ovarian Cancer, but was given the all clear and went back home.
  • In 2007, Jade fell pregnant, but miscarried at just 12 weeks of pregnancy. She then started to lose blood whilst going to the toilet.
  • In 2008, she was told abnormal cells have been found in her cervix, but she ignored the letter to go back to the hospital, as she was scared about what she’d be told.
  • In late 2008, she had a hysterectomy, and started to undergo radiotherapy and chemotherapy.
  • In 2009, a tumour is found in her bowel, so she has this removed. Several months later she dies.
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