I read an article today which made me feel sick with pure fury and anger. This article was on a varied category family targeted blog site. The type of site that pops up on many people's social media wall and has many followers and sharers. The type of page which gets a lot of attention. A site which states in small print at the bottom of the page 'they do not provide medical advice. Contact a professional' but still condone and publish posts that insinuate and encourage people to read false information and therefore frighten them into silence rather than seeking that medical help.
This article, rather grippingly titled '7 signs of Cervical Cancer that women need to observe' had my attention. This subject being close to my heart I often read these posts to compare to my own experience. It was point number 2 which at first made me doubt my own knowledge (and as a cancer patient in remission I know as much as some doctors) because surely this could not be printed if it were so unbelievably, ridiculously inaccurate! This article stated that a sign of cervical cancer is genital warts!!!! I read on half dumb founded and half in total disbelief that someone could be so incompetent, misinformed, insensitive and basically stupid to write this stuff and worse still this site approved it for publishing!!
The rest of the points merged into a blur as any credibility this writer had was now diminished in my opinion and I was more scouring for the next insult rather than valuable piece of information!! And there it was... Second on the list of best known risk factors for cervical cancer.. having multiple sexual partners!!!
Before I continue, I would like to share a few small facts (which are widely available on the internet on many different sites which can be compared and cross referenced to double clarify). HPV is a virus which 80% of people will come into contact with in their life time. There are over 100 strains of HPV. Some are harmless and can be expelled from the body naturally. Some have the potential to develop into other conditions. There are 2 strains of HPV associated with cervical cancer (type 16 & 18). These strains are not associated with genital warts or herpes.
I am guessing that the author of this post is not only ignorant and uneducated in this field but has probably not had any direct experience with the disease herself. She is also contributing to the stigma attached to cervical cancer creating even more taboo around the subject. I am sure ladies who may indeed be experiencing the signs of female cancer now feel dirty, embarrassed and ashamed to visit their GP because of this persons emphasis on HPV, being an STI, creating an impression that sufferers have slept around, have no idea about protecting their sexual health and have a string of other sexually transmitted infections!!
I would urge any ladies with concerns about their feminine health to avoid reading such narrow minded, inaccurate nonsense and visit your GP.
Women have enough to deal with when planning a smear test or health visit without throwing fear of being judged into the mix.
I hope the correct information I have provided here has as many shares as the other article. Why should women be made to feel ashamed of cervical cancer?