A University of Northampton student featured in a television documentary series last night to celebrate his recovery from testicular cancer.
Harry O’Sullivan, a third-year, joint honours undergraduate, starred in the latest episode of the E4 show Tattoo Fixers, which saw him receive a new tattoo.
After having his right testicle removed last year following the discovery of a tumour, the 21-year-old opted to have a tattoo, which symbolically depicted a single acorn on an oak tree and another acorn that had fallen off it. Beneath the artwork, he had the words ‘RIP Righty 1995-2015’ inscribed.
He said: “I wanted to have a meaningful tattoo that would remind me of what I had been through, but was also not too serious. When I first saw the design of the oak tree, I instantly loved it. In fact, the whole experience
of being on the programme was brilliant – everyone I met was so friendly, which I really appreciated.”
In December 2014, Harry noticed a lump on his testicle that continued to grow over several months. Initially misdiagnosed, he decided to have a prosthetic testicle inserted in August when an ultrasound scan revealed it to be a tumour.
However, only a month later, he was told he had stage one testicular cancer, something that he had previously not known. After undergoing a bout of chemotherapy, he returned to his studies at the end of October.
Since then, he has set up the ‘University of Northampton Testicle Team’, a volunteer group that aims to raise awareness of testicular cancer among students.
Harry said: “Unfortunately, this disease is most common in men around my age. So I want others to be able to recognise the symptoms and catch it early, like I did it. Moreover, we are raising money for Checkemlads, a charity that supports those affected by testicular cancer and who helped me through my worst period.”
Thomas Say, the Students’ Union’s Vice President Engagement and Participation, is also a member of the group. He added: “Harry has been the inspiration behind the Testicle Team from the outset, taking advantage of one of the opportunities provided by the Students’ Union to create change on campus and make a difference to the lives of his fellow students. He is a remarkable young man.”
In January, the Testicle Team were involved in a series of events, including a T-shirt awareness day, a charity masquerade ball and a charity rounders match. As a result, they have so far raised almost £1,000.
For more information on the group and its activities, visit the Students’ Union’s website www.northamptonunion.com/groups/testicle-team or find them on Facebook www.facebook.com/uontteam