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A 25-year-old cancer patient is calling for cervical screening to start at the age of 18 after she was diagnosed three weeks before her first appointment.
Amy Anderson, from Gateshead, was diagnosed with cervical cancer in March this year having just become eligible for a smear test.
Pain - Fatigue - Blood - Clots - Claims
She had been experiencing abdominal pain, fatigue and passing blood clots, but claims she was reassured it wasn't serious.
Eventually, she was referred to a gynaecologist when a nurse flagged something must be seriously wrong.
Week - Form - Disease - HPV - Virus
A week later, she was told she had an advanced form of the disease caused by the HPV virus.
Miss Anderson froze her eggs in the hopes of one day becoming a mother, before enduring eight weeks of treatment.
'Cancer - Test - Stage
She said: 'Cancer isn't waiting patiently for you to turn 25. If I'd had the smear test when I was younger I may not be at the stage I am now.
'I think people feel they don't need to think about it until they are 25-years-old.
Age - Women - Test - Lives - Women
'But it's not like it can't happen before then. Lowering the age women are offered the smear test could save the lives of countless women.'
A smear test detects abnormal cells on the cervix, which is the entrance to the uterus from the ****, and can lead to further investigations.
Women - Age - Miss - Anderson
Women are invited to have them from the age of 25 - but Miss Anderson said this should be lowered to 18.
There are roughly 3,200 cases of cervical cancer diagnosed every year, according to Cancer Research, and 854 deaths.
Cent - Cases - Screening - Vaccinations - Contraception
Almost 100 per cent of cases are preventable with screening, vaccinations and contraception to avoid infections.
Miss Anderson, a paralegal at the time, decided to go to the walk-in medical centre in late February.
Book - Doctor - Appointment - Symptoms - Couple
She had already tried to book a doctor's appointment after suffering with symptoms that had persisted for a couple...
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"It is useless to attempt to reason a man out of a thing he was never reasoned into"--Jonathan Swift