Cancer diagnosis: Women make excuses to shun smear tests

9th June 2011

Millions of women in the UK are putting themselves at risk of late cancer diagnosis by avoiding going for a routine smear test, it has been claimed.

Statistics from cervical cancer charity Jo's Trust has shown that many women actively avoid going for their smear tests for minor reasons, such as worrying about asking for time off work.

Some also said they find it difficult to fit the ten-minute appointment into their schedule.

Lucy Maxwell, a trustee of the charity, which was set up in memory of her mum Jo, said: "You have to wonder if there's a certain amount of excuse-making going on. From my point of view, make time for it."

The charity saw a surge in the number of women going for smear tests when Big Brother contestant Jade Goody was very publically suffering from the disease, but since then the numbers have slumped.

Smear tests are routinely offered to all women aged between 25 and 64 every three to five years. They are used to spot changes in cells which can lead to cervical cancer if they go undetected.

Posted by Phillip Briggs

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