11 Dec 2018

The Eve Appeal

Introducing our new charity partner, 'The Eve Appeal'

The Eve Appeal is the only UK national charity raising awareness and funding research into the five gynaecological cancers – womb, ovarian, cervical, vulval and vaginal.

Every day in the UK, 58 women are diagnosed with a gynaecological cancer and 21 will die. Yet despite these grim statistics, gynaecological cancers are neither a well-profiled nor a well-funded cause. The Eve Appeal is determined to change this for the future of women everywhere.

To develop a future where fewer women develop and more women survive gynaecological cancers, The Eve Appeal funds ground-breaking research focused on developing effective methods of risk prediction, earlier detection and developing screening for these women-only cancers.

One of their research projects aims to develop one test to predict four cancers (breast, womb, ovarian and cervical) and we were treated to a lab tour at UCL with The Eve Appeal, to see some of the ground breaking work they are doing to develop this new test:

The Eve Appeal is also passionate about breaking down barriers and talking about the taboos that surround women’s health. It matters, because talking about gynae issues, going through the menopause or experiencing unusual bleeding or pain should never be too embarrassing to seek help for – whatever your age.

The charity also provides a specialist gynaecological cancer information service – Ask Eve, offering information and support on all five gynaecological cancers. The service is run by Gynae Cancer Nurse Specialist Tracie Miles and Cancer Information Officer Karen Hobbs.

The team helps women and men who have any type of gynae-related question whether that’s talking about unusual vaginal discharge, the results of a pelvic examination or risks associated with hereditary cancers.

This May BUY IT. WEAR IT. SHOUT IT!

GET LIPPY is about talking openly about gynaecological health, smashing taboos, asking difficult questions and raising money for a good cause. New research shows that women are potentially putting their lives at risk because they don't have the right language to talk about their bodies with doctors. The Eve Appeal is launching a national campaign to provide women with the right information and confidence to talk clearly about anatomy and symptoms in order to better diagnose key health concerns, including the five gynaecological cancers.

To #GetLippy and help deliver change for women:

Blow a kiss on social media. Post your kiss on Instagram with the hashtag #GetLippy and text EVE LIPPY to 70577* to donate £5. Then pass it on - tag 5 friends to do the same!

Top tips for talking gynae

HOW TO STOP EMBARRASSMENT PUTTING YOUR HEALTH AT RISK

The Eve Appeal has conducted a new study that reveals almost half of healthcare professionals believe poor knowledge and embarrassment may be putting women’s lives at risk.

The new data shows the UK urgently needs to change the way we address women’s gynaecological health. Of the healthcare professionals surveyed, nearly half (47%) agree women not knowing the correct terminology for their reproductive anatomy could lead to delayed diagnosis of a gynaecological cancer.

The Eve Appeal are working to make every conversation between a patient and a healthcare professional count and as part of this year’s GET LIPPY campaign have produced some Top Tips for Talking Gynae.

The Eve Appeal’s Athena Lamnisos says, “Doctors have on average 10 minutes with a patient. We want to make sure those minutes are well used to diagnose cancer at the earliest stage. To do this, we need to make sure women have the information and confidence they need to have a conversation about their symptoms. That’s what GET LIPPY is here to do: get those conversations going and make them count.”

WHAT DOCTORS SAY

Dr Ellie Cannon, NHS GP and media doctor

“As a GP I want to get patients the help they need. Some gynaecological symptoms can be vague and hard to describe and it’s easy to see why some might be embarrassing to talk about. But we want to get the most out of the time we have with a patient in primary care. So Top Tips for Talking Gynae will really help. A lump in your vagina is very different to a lump on your vulva – make sure you can explain the difference.”

Dr Louise Newson, GP with a specialism in menopause

“Being open and honest about any gynaecological symptoms will make a real difference to women’s health. Women have suffered in silence for too long and are often embarrassed talking about these types of symptoms. However, working as a doctor there is nothing that embarrasses me! It is so much easier when women are prepared for their consultations and talk openly about all symptoms. Being able to make a prompt diagnosis usually leads to earlier treatment being initiated and then less suffering.”

Dr Bella Smith, NHS GP, runs an online women’s health forum

‘My experience as a woman and a doctor tells me that women need to take control of their health journey and be proud of what we are. We need to be able to confidently describe our own anatomy without feeling shame or embarrassment and be able to teach our children to do the same. This knowledge and understanding can only empower women and ultimately save lives. I want to have good conversations with my patients where we can get to the point and understand what is concerning them. This means better knowledge and better language.’

Dr Sarah Jarvis, GP and Clinical Director of www.patient.info

“There are lots of reasons women don’t consult their doctor soon enough with gynae symptoms. They include embarrassment and lack of understanding about what a change might mean. But delay can literally sometimes be deadly. Your doctor is far more likely to have time to deal with your problem thoroughly if you have all the information you need to hand, and if you don’t go in with a long list of unrelated problems. Top Tips for Talking Gynae is an invaluable way to help you ensure you get the answers you need.”


Dr Christine Ekechi, Consultant Gynaecologist, Imperial College

“Opening up the conversation around women’s health starts with us talking openly and without embarrassment about female anatomy, understanding what is normal and recognising what is not. The conversations involve all of us, men and women. This is how we break taboos surrounding women’s health that exist in our cultural groups, between our friends and family and ultimately, within ourselves.”

Dr Anita Mitra (AKA The Gynae Geek) an NHS doctor working in Obs & Gynae

”As a gynaecologist I want women to know that there’s no area that off-limits in my consultation room. It doesn’t matter if you know the right terminology, if something’s bothering you, you need to let me know so that I can help. But that also requires knowing when something’s not right. Ladies, get to know what’s normal for you! It’s the easiest way that we can begin to tackle the poor health outcomes associated with women’s health and gynae cancers in particular.”

AND PATIENTS…

Lydia Brain, diagnosed with womb cancer at 27“It took nearly three years from when my symptoms started to be diagnosed with womb cancer.  If I’d had more awareness of what my symptoms might mean and how serious they could be, if I’d had more meaningful conversations with my GP and been taken more seriously when I did, these delays could have been avoided. These Top Tips by Eve Appeal will help other young women with gynae symptoms get help when they need it.”

Clare Baumhauer, diagnosed with vulval cancer

“When I visited my doctor I didn’t know I had a vulva, I thought it was a vagina and so right from the offset I was telling him the wrong information. If I could go back in time I would. I was describing an itch ‘down there’ but neither he nor I said the word vulva. I was embarrassed as I was young and it was a male doctor so after I described my symptoms I was glad he didn’t ask to look.”

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