August 19, 2008
Ryan’s Advice is Check Your Balls
By Liz Perkins
Grand Slam winning captain Ryan Jones is today calling on young men to "check their balls" in a drive to reduce testicular cancer.
The Ospreys No 8 is getting involved in the drive, which will see hundreds of waterproof shower cards and posters placed in changing rooms across Wales.
It is hoped the Health Challenge Wales campaign will not only highlight the disease, but also the importance of the early detection of testicular cancer.
Research shows testicular cancer is the most common form of cancer in men aged between 15 and 44.
Although the disease is quite rare, such cancer cases have more than doubled since 1975.
Around 100 new cases are detected in Wales every year.
But testicular cancer is 99 per cent curable, if it is caught early enough, and the overall cure rate is more than 95 per cent.
Ryan said he hoped the new campaign would help get rid of the embarrassment around the subject and encourage men to examine themselves.
He said: "When it comes to testicular cancer, our health is quite literally 'in our hands'.
"There's a very high success rate of treatment for testicular cancer if it's caught early enough.
"Self-examination is crucial and I hope that these shower cards and posters will help remind men to have a quick check after a game, workout or shower.
"It could save their life."
Tony Jewell, chief medical officer for Wales, added: "Testicular cancer does not have to kill.
"It can be treated if caught in time.
"With 100 men being diagnosed every year with this form of cancer, it's clear that there is a great deal more that we can do to remind young men to regularly examine themselves. By circulating posters and shower cards throughout leisure centres and sporting organisations, we hope to raise awareness."
The shower cards, along with the posters, will be handed out to leisure centres and governing bodies.
If you would like a copy of the cards contact Health Challenge Wales on 02920 825935.
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