Charities play a vital role in raising awareness of early diagnosis and hard-hitting campaigns can be effective in this aim. However, charities do have a choice about how to do this, considering the thoughts and feelings of many who could be affected. Yes it has got people talking but at the expense of distress to others and I am not convinced that is a fair or necessary price to pay.
Think of disease in Africa and you maybe think of malaria. But this is not the whole picture. In Africa and across developing countries, people are living longer and their lifestyles are changing. With this shift, a different threat is emerging...
Three years ago, at the age of 29, after taking up the invitation for my regular cervical screening, I received my first abnormal result. The re-test showed mild changes to the cells of my cervix and so I was referred to the hospital's colposcopy clinic for a biopsy. First thing I did? Worry myself stupid!
You might have heard of 'Mindfulness'. A lot is talked and written about its usefulness. But like with so many things, it can feel like a daunting task and yet another thing to invest a lot of energy in, before it can be of any use. Well, it is not necessarily so. Let me explain a bit more.
Professor David Haslam, chairman of the National Institute of Health and Care Excellence (NICE), says in an interview with the Daily Telegraph, that patients should be more pro-active about their health and 'pushier' with their GPs. How realistic is his view, and where does our responsibility towards ourselves as patients start and that of a medical professional end?
When did smear tests become something optional? Something we'd try and squeeze in if we had time? Or do more women need to die from cervical cancer before we get the message? It beggars belief that smear tests - which can help spotlight at-risk women and help prevent cervical cancer - are seen as something that isn't absolutely necessary.
Every day in the UK approximately 900 people get diagnosed with cancer. That works out to be 300,000 every year. In every three people you know, one will develop cancer. A few everyday changes can be made to help you reduce your risk of developing cancer.
This is simply the work of a surly photographer imposing into another celebrity's private life; the photograph was taken on a backstreet while Jennifer was shopping with a friend, she didn't spark up live on stage or television. Celebrity or otherwise, how Jennifer deals with her post-cancer recovery is her business. And hers alone.
All that has been mentioned so far is the risk to women alone. A virus is not gender specific in seeking out a host and men are prone to infection too. While men manage to dodge the cervical cancer scares, there are many other cancers linked to HPV that will leave many wincing and holding their sacred genitalia in fear.
We've seen examples of this in the past where researchers have been able to highlight aspects of lifestyle that affect the risk of developing disease. This past week marked the 50th anniversary of the US Surgeon General report on smoking, which for the first time in the US highlighted the significant health harms to the general public from smoking.
A new report from UK think tank the Overseas Development Institute shows that globally, one in three adults was overweight or obese in 2008, an increase of 23% since 1980. In the developing world, the number of overweight or obese adults more than tripled from 250million to 904million.
Last summer, I did my first (unpaid) internship at a magazine. I turned 31 during the placement - older than a lot of my colleagues at the magazine and not much younger than the editor. In many ways, it was one of the best things I ever did.
But in order to not look back at 2013 as a year of tragedy, loss and bad news, I'm trying my hardest to focus on the fighting spirit it has caused so many of us to employ.
A simple question. Unfortunately, there is no simple answer. Being affected by cancer this Christmas can come in many different ways. You, someone you know or are close to, may have just been diagnosed, may undergo or finish treatment.
While we do not have the disease, our own lives can become overshadowed and change. We may lose part of ourselves (hopes, aspirations, freedom, love and support) and a level of being care-free: without having to worry, without having to care for another.
If you've never been on a chemo ward, you'd be forgiven for thinking it would be full of people hooked up to machines, looking thin, grey, exhausted. And to a degree, you'd be right. We are all hooked up to machines. However, what you perhaps don't expect is the inspiration, comradeship, hope and laughter that spills from the room.