Belfast Telegraph

Personal stories: Sharon Montgomery runs the Cervical Cancer Northern Ireland charity

All women should have a smear test

Sharon from Bangor said: "There was no support network specifically for women going through cervical cancer so I decided to set up Cervical Cancer NI.

"I was diagnosed in 2010 and have been through it three times.

"The first time I didn't tell anyone, I was ignorant of how serious it was. I had radiotherapy and then had to have chemotherapy.

"I set up a support page on Facebook and it has nearly 6,000 women on it now, and then last year I set the group up as a charity.

"I have been engaging with MLAs at Stormont and there has been a lot of support there. And I've been talking to the Public Health Agency about a solo campaign for cervical cancer.

"It's important there is somewhere for women to meet and have a coffee and just talk.

"I'm six months clear so I'm getting back to normality, whatever that is!"

Cervical Cancer awareness month has just passed, but it's important that women are mindful of their gynaecological health and do not ignore any symptoms they are experiencing, such as abnormal vaginal bleeding, between periods or after sex.

Sharon is appealing for women in Northern Ireland to make sure they get routine smear tests done.

"I would ask everyone to please encourage friends and family to get there smear test.

"A smear could save your life."

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