This Story Of A Bride Who Was Too Young For A Smear Test And Died Of Cancer Is Utterly Heartbreaking
Dawn Weston's family hope her story can help others.
This is Dawn Weston, who was told late last year that she had incurable cervical cancer and had months to live.
Her dying wish was for a wedding, which her family managed to plan in just five weeks.
Her husband, Daniel, 28, told Caters News: “When Dawn began complaining of crippling back pain in 2013, she went to the doctors, but she was never offered a smear test as at 24 she was too young."
A month later she visited the doctor again and was given a smear test, which showed abnormal results. She had a treatment and then a biopsy.
Daniel said: "Dawn wanted to get married before she started gruelling rounds of chemotherapy, so she could keep her hair and some colour in her cheeks. It was a perfect day – I am so thankful I was able to fulfil Dawn's last wish of becoming my wife."
A few days after their wedding on 3 January, Dawn began an intense course of chemotherapy. Daniel said: "Her beautiful hair started coming out in clumps and her face became bloated. But nothing could take away her smile."
She passed away four months later.
Daniel added: "I came home one day and found a letter for a routine smear test. It was too little too late."
Her family are now petitioning for a change in the law that would mean women under the age of 25 can have routine smear tests.
"Dawn wished she had a smear test earlier, and even though lowering the age wouldn't help her she was keen to try and help others," Daniel said. "That was the type of person she was: completely selfless and caring."
Dawn's family are also fundraising for St Wilfred's Hospice due to the fantastic care she received. You can visit their JustGiving page here.
Medical student David Carroll has got in touch to point out some research suggests that "cervical screening in women aged 20-24 has little or no impact on rates of invasive cervical cancer up to age 30." Public Health England believes women with symptoms of cervical cancer are better served by diagnostic tests.