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Our Girl actress Michelle Keegan video blogged her own smear test to encourage other women to go along to their appointments and get checked out for cervical cancer.
Michelle took to her Instagram page to document her visit to the doctor, admitting that she had 'pushed aside' reminders to book in for a smear test and ignored her own mum's pleas - something many women will be able to relate to.
A smear test takes a sample of cells from the cervix to check for abnormalities that may be indicative of cervical cancer.
Michelle had done her research too - around 3,200 women are diagnosed with cervical cancer every year in the UK, according to Cancer Research UK.
It is the most common form of cancer in women under the age of 35, and around 75 per cent of cases can be prevented with regular check-ups. Figures for 2017 show that screening rates are at their lowest in two decades.
The former Coronation Street soap star posted a video on her Instagram account, as well as a snap of her lying on the examination table to encourage her followers to attend.
Along with her video, Michelle shared a lengthy caption, admitting that she was both 'embarrassed' and 'apprehensive' about the cervical screening examination.
"I used the excuse of being 'too busy' with work and life in general," she explained in the caption. "Let's face it, it's bloody embarrassing to drop your knickers and open your legs in front of a total stranger. I was apprehensive thinking about the pain I was going to endure!"
But speaking in the video, the actress reassured her followers that it was 'really quick, really easy', and wasn't painful like she imagined.
Encouraging other women to always attend their appointments, Michelle said: "So smear's been done. I was in the room for five minutes, on the bed for two, it was really quick, really easy.
"It wasn't painful at all. Just a little uncomfortable."
The actress then added: "So ladies, I'm urging you to book in your smear, go and get it done and tell all your family and friends to get it done. It is so important and so easy."
Michelle's fans quickly praised her on raising awareness on the importance of smear tests in the comments.
"That 5 minutes Saved my life... get booked in ladies Thankyou @michkeegan," shared one person.
While another posted: "Well done for raising awareness, I've just finally had the all clear from cervical cancer im only 24! I would rather a 2 minute smear than what I've just had to go through in the last 12 months [sic]."
For more help and support on cervical cancer, visit Cancer Research UK or your GP.
Featured Image Credit: PA Images
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