A grieving husband shared his family's story on Facebook in a plea to women everywhere to get screened for cervical cancer.
The heart-breaking story comes exactly a year after his wife was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer and just months after her death.
On Dec. 22, exactly a year after his wife was diagnosed with cervical cancer, Elliot Lowe posted a message on Facebook. Lowe shared his family's struggle because of cancer and urged people to take preventative measures.
In the post, Elliot states how his wife was diagnosed with cervical cancer three days before Christmas of 2016. Weeks later on Jan. 10, 2017, further tests confirmed that his wife Donna indeed had stage 4 cervical cancer and revealed that it had already spread to her lymph nodes in the pelvic area. Although they fought the disease as Donna endured six weeks of daily radiotherapy, she eventually succumbed to cancer just months after on Aug. 5.
A Call For Encouragement
In the post, Elliot states that his wife had missed her last smear test and how he wished that he'd have urged her to have it. He states that while his awareness is not exactly the most comfortable experience for a woman, encouraging women to have a smear test regularly could save their lives.
Ultimately, Elliot is inviting people to fight cancer with early detection. He further shared that he is in contact with other women who were being treated at the same time as his wife but had been cleared of the disease. He also shared photos of his wife before the diagnosis and while she was in the process of fighting cancer.
"I know its Christmas and some of the pictures may distress you, i apologies if they do, but I needed to demonstrate how devastating Cancer is," Elliot said in the post.
He's also urging people to fight cancer together and to not let another family go through what they are experiencing.
What Is A Smear Test?
The cervical screening test also called a pap smear or a smear test is a process in which a doctor or a nurse gathers samples from the cervix to check for early changes in the cells even before they become cancer cells. As Elliot mentioned, it is not the most comfortable procedure as it entails using a specialized instrument to keep the vagina open and another to gather a sample from the cervix.
The smear test is not a diagnostic test and it is not 100 percent accurate, but any changes observed in the laboratory could prompt and help advise doctors of the next steps needed to be taken. A routine screening is often scheduled every three or five years depending on the age of the patient as well as the results of previous screenings.