YOUNG women are skipping cervical smear tests because they are too embarrassed to show their privates, a new study found.
Those aged 25 to 35 are also discouraged by fears that cervical smear tests will hurt.
As many as 81 per cent said shame put them off.
The 2009 death of reality TV star Jade Goody sparked a surge in screenings — but now they are at a 20-year low.
Almost one in three women aged 25 to 64 have missed tests within their advised time frame.
There were 854 deaths from cervical cancer in England in 2016.
The findings come a week after The Sun launched our #CheersForSmears campaign, encouraging women to attend their screening.
Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust surveyed just over 2,000 young women about their experiences.
It found that of 915 women who have delayed a test or never gone for screening, 71% felt scared while 75% felt vulnerable.
Eight out of 10 (81%) said they felt embarrassed, while 67% said they would not feel in control.
When asked what had caused them to delay or miss a test, 72% said embarrassment, while 69% felt uncomfortable with a stranger examining an intimate area.
WHEN Jade Goody died a decade ago of cervical cancer, it prompted nearly half a million more women than usual to go for a smear test.
Dubbed “the Jade Goody effect”, the TV personality’s death at 27 was a stark reminder of how important it is to go for screening appointments.
The Sun launched Jade’s Legacy, a campaign to encourage women to attend these vital checks, which contributed to the huge increase.
Sadly, Jade’s legacy is now all-but forgotten.
Jade had a number of health scares after leaving Big Brother but it was when she entered Bigg Boss that she was given a diagnosis of cervical cancer in August 2008.
It was reportedly at an advanced stage and she had to undergo surgery and chemotherapy treatment.
But by February 2009, it had spread to her liver, bowel and groin and was told by doctors at the Royal Marsden Hospital in London that her condition was terminal.
Jade was diagnosed with cervical cancer in August 2008 and died in March 2009.