The Ugly Truth About Women’s Cancer Screening

Over 10,000 comments containing truthful information and personal stories about pap smears, cervical cancer and other women’s health issues have been removed following changes on Blogcritics. The comments – over nine years worth – provided women with information that is often difficult to find and that is usually withheld by the medical community.  But the comments are no longer there.

Elizabeth’s (Aust) response:

I view those posts as a rare account of the real impact of this testing. The hidden truth, the ugly truth. The slash and burn approach adopted in many countries means huge numbers are harmed in an attempt to help a few. Yet evidence based testing would have achieved the same result, or better, without the awful carnage (Finland, The Netherlands). These women have had no voice, no one wanted to hear from them and posting to a women’s forum was usually met with, “you should be grateful you didn’t have cancer”.
BlogCritics was probably the first safe place for women to share, vent…you could feel the pain in many of the posts, and the relief to be finally surrounded by people who understood and cared.
Thankfully, there are now a couple of other safe houses. I know many of those posts have stayed with me. Remember Megan? Her life and health destroyed by an unnecessary cone biopsy…she lives with spotting, cramping, odour, pain, embarrassment…her relationship ended, sex was no longer a pleasant or easy experience…and the future, she was facing more surgery to re-open the cervix. To get pregnant….she’d probably need medical assistance to conceive, and deliver by c-section.
The fact is…it was avoidable, all of it…an early pap test sealed her fate. This is the very reason we shouldn’t be testing women under 30…to protect them from this fate.
Ignore the evidence….and we harm many women, we destroy lives.
Now it’s even easier, for those who wish to test, offer HPV primary testing or HPV self-testing at age 30 and offer a pap test every 5 years to the small number of women who test HPV+
(until they clear the virus) BUT,
No one cares about harming women and no one cares about saving as many lives as possible…evidence based testing would save more lives.
It says to me our health and lives have never been the highest priority with this testing, not by miles.    Elizabeth (Aust)