Less than two years ago, at the age of 29, Bendigo woman Casey McIntyre received a shocking stage four cervical cancer diagnosis.
I actually went to hospital because I had a ruptured cyst on my ovaries. While they were scanning the ovaries, they found the mass. I was in shock, I thought I was too young to get cervical cancer.
I am using my experience to raise awareness among young Victorians of the risks of developing cervical cancer and the importance of prioritising screening when you turn 25.
I hope that other women or people with cervixes hear my story and realise that you don’t have to be old to get cervical cancer. I hope that my story highlights the importance of early detection and helps to save lives.
It is shocking that so many people my age are missing out on the chance to find cervical cancer early and prevent themselves going through invasive treatment or even a terminal diagnosis.
You really need to get cervical screening on your to-do list. The test should only take a few minutes every five years and it could find cervical cancer early or prevent high-risk types of HPV developing into cervical cancer. This screening test could ultimately save your life.
Young people need to prioritise their health and think about their future. We are not invincible.