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Cervical Cancer Scare

I had a serious cervical cancer scare 3 years ago. Because of my leukemia diagnosis when I was 22, I am very good about looking after me as much as I can. So when I get smear test letters, I go. And ladies, It’s not bad. It’s not embarrassing. It’s not painful. It’s fine!! If I can go through IVF and have eggs collected and most of that treatment being done by men, I can easily see a female nurse for a smear that takes 10 seconds.

Because I am good about things like this, slightly abnormal cells were detected when I was around 25 and I had 6 monthly smears for a bit. I think I had a normal one and a check-up in 6 months just to check how things were, and it was a good job that I went as they had gone back to being abnormal. I then had a colposcopy (which doesn’t hurt, it’s fine) and that came back inconclusive, so I had another one. That one came back as pre-cancerous, so I had the LLETZ procedure under general anesthetic and had 14 mm of my cervix removed.

Stay away from Dr. Google

When I got the call that something wasn’t right it and I needed the LLETZ procedure it was a voicemail on a Friday evening.  This threw me into a panic because I then went to Dr. Google because by the time I got the voicemail everyone had gone home. I know it’s stupid to do that. I know I worried myself for no reason.  I tell everyone to stay off Dr. Google and then did it myself.  What an idiot. But I think that’s also because in the UK everyone seems to think that abnormal smears and needing a colposcopy mean that you have cervical cancer. Which simply isn’t true. It’s normally because pre-cancerous cells have been detected which is a very different ball game!

Throwing the word cancer around stops women for going to checks because they are scared.  Or that they think they have cancer when they don’t.  When you have abnormal cells, it’s a possibility that cervical cancer can or might develop because the abnormal cells haven’t been removed. It’s a bit like saying a bruise means you’ve got a broken bone underneath. So. Yes. Dr. Google. I couldn’t have been more stupid as all I focused on was the word cancer.

Have no fear, go get a smear

It also threw me back to when I had my leukemia diagnosis over the phone and brought up all that shock and trauma.

The reason I am writing about this, slightly off topic to leukemia, is because it’s a part of my life and that’s what I write about. And also because it’s so important that women go for their smears. Oh and also, chronic myeloid leukemia and cervical cancer are absolutely in no way whatsoever connected. I’m just glad that my diagnosis means I go and get myself checked out, so I could be treated before it had developed any further.  And I urge all you ladies and men who have ladies that they love in their lives, to urge them to book their appointments when the letter arrives.

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The Blood-Cancer.com team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

Comments

  • Ann Harper moderator
    2 months ago

    I also believe in yearly checkups. Hopefully they show nothing, but, if there is a problem you would at least know and can plan what you would do th rectify the situation.

  • Crystal Harper moderator
    2 months ago

    It’s so important for us all to stay on top of our medical appointments and be our own advocates. Before I was diagnosed with cancer, I couldn’t even remember the last time I had seen a doctor! I’ll never let that happen again. Thanks for the great info and reminders!

  • Yolanda Brunson-Sarrabo moderator
    2 months ago

    Great advice, that all women should be following. Thanks for the reminder!

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