“There’s no reason why women should be the only ones who get support,” Dr. Deborah Mukherji said. Photo taken at the AUBMC in Beirut, Thursday, Aug. 2, 2018. (The Daily Star/Grace Kassab)
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"Until I was diagnosed, I had never even heard about this type of cancer," George said, recalling when he was diagnosed with testicular cancer in July 2017 .George's experience reflects a broader trend in Lebanon, in which the taboo of speaking about cancer, and men's overall reluctance to speak about their health issues – particularly reproductive health – has led to silence and misinformation about a disease with a lower fatality rate compared with other cancers.Saab, who grew up in Lebanon, conducted the only study on the experiences of men who have testicular cancer in the country, while he was working as an oncology nurse at the American University of Beirut.The same is not true for testicular cancer and men's health. The medical professionals and public-health advocates interviewed by The Daily Star said there are no awareness campaigns in Lebanon for testicular cancer, and that there is only one in the whole country for general men's-health awareness. If awareness improves, the country still has to grapple with how to give psychological help to men living with testicular cancer.George said he wants to help change the way people think about testicular cancer in Lebanon.
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