Victoria Cristofis was just 28-years-old when she had to undergo a full hysterectomy after being diagnosed with cervical cancer in 2014.
She might be cancer-free now, but nerve damage inflicted by the hysterectomy means Victoria will have to learn to self-catheterise- she is also on a waiting list to receive botox treatment on her bladder.
The brave mum-of-three maintains the shock diagnosis and its after-effects could have been avoided if she hadn’t put off vital cervical smear testing due to being scared and embarassed.
She has since urging women to get checked regularly through her campaign “Vicki’s Right to Fight”, distributing informative leaflets and posters as well as holding talks at venues across Worksop.
“If I can stop just one woman going through this horrible drawn out process, I will,” said Victoria.
“I want to remind women everywhere that this could have been prevented.
“Even after having the cancer is removed, the illness can still have a huge impact on your life.”
According to Cancer Research UK, around nine cases of cervical cancer are diagnosed in the UK each year.
But smear tests prevent at least 2,000 cervical cancer deaths annually, detecting abnormal cells before they ebcome cancerous.
“I can vouch for the fact that nothing can prepare you for a cancer diagnosis- all I could think about was the fact I might not see my little girls grow up,” added Vicky.
“But I can also vouch for the fact that a cervical screening test can save lives. If I had kept putting it off, I might not have still been here today.”
Find more information on Victoria’s campaign on Facebook at: www.facebook.com/VickiRightToFight.
To raise further awareness, Victoria has teamed up with local make-up artists to hold a competition to win a professional makeover- you can enter by liking her page.