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University teaches 1,000 people to check for signs of cancer

More than 1,000 people were taught ways to check for signs of breast and testicular cancers at a 12-hour event at Loughborough University last week.

The event, which ran from 8am-8pm on 21 March, was organised by Loughborough University staff, the Loughborough Students’ Union and the breast cancer charity CoppaFeel!

On average, one person is diagnosed every 10 minutes with breast cancer, affecting all genders – and there are almost 2,500 new cases of testicular cancer each year with almost 50% of cases in men under 35.

A total of 1,157 staff, students and members of the community were taught the self-checking techniques in sessions throughout the day. The sessions were made up of a short presentation and a chance to practice identifying lumps and unusual masses on specialist training mannequins.

Liam Davis, Director of Student Opportunities at Loughborough Students’ Union, said of the event:

The event has been really successful, and we’re really pleased with the number of staff, students and members of the community we’ve had through the door. 

The event was supported by two former students Sarah Dixon and Phil Rose, both of whom have been diagnosed with cancer in the past.

Sarah, who was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2017, said she had “zero idea of breast cancer” and didn’t self-examine. She only became aware of a lump after her dog jumped on her chest one evening and she felt a sharp pain.

Phil, who was diagnosed with testicular cancer at the age of 17, added:

I think events like this are really useful, a media campaign notified me to check myself regularly so days like Lumps and Bumps are great for raising awareness.

Phoebe Lazell, Uni Boob Team Manager and Student Fundraiser at CoppaFeel! said:

It was incredible to be a part of such an uplifting day and empower so many engaged staff and students to get to know their bodies.

The event also received celebrity backing from the likes of Game of Thrones’ Maisie Williams and Made In Chelsea’s Jamie Laing.

Image by Loughborough University

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