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Cervical Cancer Prevention Week taking place next week

Thursday 19th January 2017
January 22nd to January 28th will see Cervical Cancer Prevention Week take place in the UK. Image: Ugreen via iStock
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    The annual Cervical Cancer Prevention Week run by charity Jo's Trust is set to return in the UK next week from Sunday January 22nd to Saturday January 28th.

    This event is designed to raise awareness of the importance of women attending the regular smear test appointments that they are invited for to help improve the chance of cervical cancer being spotted and treated earlier.

    However, statistics from the charity show that one in four UK women miss their smear test, meaning they are putting themselves at greater risk of being diagnosed with the disease too late, when it can no longer be treated.

    Therefore, in a bid to raise awareness and do away with the fears and hesitations that may surround cervical cancer screening for some, Jo's Trust is running a campaign on social media over the next week using the #smearforsmear tag.

    Everyone from nursing staff to celebrities and politicians will be encouraged to post a selfie online of themselves with a smear of lipstick or other make-up across their face to signify that smear tests involve just a quick sweep of the cervix and are not painful; no more so than having a make-up smudge.

    Last year, celebrities including model Cara Delevingne and Rita Ora took part in the campaign, with Jo's Trust hoping to garner even more support this time around.

    Smear tests - for which women are invited every three years between the ages of 25 and 49, after which time the frequency changes - can prevent 75 per cent of cases of cervical cancers, which is the most common form of cancer affecting females in this age category.

    Currently, nine women are diagnosed with the disease in Britain every day, while three deaths are recorded from the illness daily, but Jo's Trust hopes that with increased awareness, support from nurses and the power of social media, these numbers will drop even further in the near future.

    Written by James Puckle

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