Get in touch: send your photos, videos, news & views by texting YORK to 80360 or send an email»
Raising awareness of breast cancer
A BREAST cancer survivor who was told she could not have children before going on to have a daughter has spoken of the importance of early detection.
Tracie Geelan, 49, of Harrogate, was diagnosed just before her 36th birthday and after undergoing a lump excision followed by chemotherapy and radiotherapy was eventually given the all-clear.
Doctors told her the treatment had brought forward the menopause, meaning it was very unlikely she would have children, but Tracie became pregnant soon after the prognosis and now has a ten-year-old daughter.
She is now urging more mothers to speak to their daughters about breast awareness and checking – supporting research which has found the mother-daughter relationship is key to early detection.
Tracie, a sales leader for Avon, which commissioned the research, said: “Breast cancer is quite prevalent in this day and age and something women should be aware of. My daughter was aware of my reconstruction surgery. She needed to know what I was having done and why.
“My advice [to mothers] would be to introduce them to looking after their bodies as early as possible. Girls should be made aware of the necessity of looking after their own health.”
The research found almost a third of mothers (31 per cent) have not spoken to their daughters about breast awareness, despite 40 per cent saying they feel best-placed to engage with daughters.
More than 80 per cent of mothers surveyed had never spoken with their own mothers about breast awareness, indicating generational differences in initiating conversations with daughters.
Breast cancer is the most common cancer in the UK, with around 135 women diagnosed every day.
With one in three women in the UK not checking their breasts, forming a habit of checking at a younger age could increase breast awareness across a lifetime and improve the rate of early detection, Avon has said.
• A fundraising event organised by a Selby man raised more than £1,000 for charity.
Shaun Johnson, 46, of Darcy Road, Selby, suffered from polycystic kidney disease, and underwent a kidney transplant in 2011, following a year of dialysis. He hosted a special event at Huntington Working Men’s Club featuring live music acts to raise money for the York Teaching Hospital Charity’s self-care dialysis unit being set up at Selby’s New War Memorial Hospital.