Womb cancer is the most common gynaecological cancer (and the 4th most common cancer that affects women) yet gets very little awareness despite over 9,000 women being diagnosed every year (according to CRUK) Cervical cancer has an awareness week at the end of January and a cervical screening awareness week in mid-June. Ovarian cancer has its awareness month in March. But nothing for womb cancer!!
So in September 2011, the year we were formed, we decided to follow on from our American Sisters and take September and turn it “PEACH” – which if you don’t know by now is the awareness colour for womb cancer.
Now, if you know your cancers, then you will know that there are actually 5 gynaecological cancers; womb, ovarian, cervical, vaginal and vulval. Sadly the last 2 get even less recognition than womb cancer does but as womb cancer is the most common of the 5 we at WCSUK believe that it deserves a month of its own and that is why we will continue to use September as womb cancer awareness month. Lumping it in with the others and calling it gynaecological awareness month is not giving womb cancer the full exposure it needs. By the way, we also think that vaginal and vulval cancers deserve more awareness and we are glad to see a couple of UK based patient led organisations have recently been set up to help raise awareness, not forgetting the amazing Kath Mazzella in Australia who has been raising awareness of vulval cancer for over 20 years.
So, this September we will once again be running a month long awareness campaign, adding to the awareness we raise on a daily basis. After all, more women are diagnosed with womb cancer than either cervical or ovarian yet many have never heard of it before being diagnosed. It is still seen by many in the medical profession as something that only post-menopausal women get yet we know from the ladies who come to us that it can affect women of all ages.
Sadly, there are more and more younger women being diagnosed and it’s often very hard for them to get a firm diagnosis because, despite presenting with all the usual symptoms they are told by their GP that they are “too young” to be diagnosed. You are #NEVERTOOYOUNG to get womb cancer.
This September, as in the previous 7 years, WCSUK will be doing all we can to raise awareness of womb cancer. Please look out for our social media campaign and we hope you will help us to spread the word. We may only be a very small grassroots organisation but we are determined to #GiveWombCancerAVoice.