Why I’m growing a moustache for Movember

“Movember provides a route for men’s health which is the male equivalent of the very high profile and widely supported women’s breast cancer campaigns. Men are certainly getting better at talking about and acting upon health concerns. But I still see a lot of men in clinic who have only come because their wife or partner has persuaded them.”
Mr John Parkin, consultant urologist Birmingham Prostate Clinic

“For the second year running, I will be joining the ranks of ‘Mo Bros’ and growing a moustache for Movember.

“I did it for the first time last year and I remember arriving at a family christening and getting all these slightly aghast looks from my relatives. But when I explained why I was doing it, they thought was a good and interesting idea.

“Movember originates in Australia but is now a worldwide phenomenon. It is a very simple thing – grow a moustache to raise awareness about men’s health issues and also fundraise.

“A moustache is very visible and is a great talking point – it paves the way for conversations with patients, colleagues, friends and family which might not otherwise take place.

“In some ways, it provides a route for men’s health which is the male equivalent of the very high profile and widely supported women’s breast cancer campaigns.

“Men are certainly getting better at talking about and acting upon health concerns. But I still see a lot of men in clinic who have only come because their wife or partner has persuaded them. There is also the common scenario of the man who comes in for one problem and then when we talk, he describes getting up to the toilet three times a night; something that is very debilitating and needs to be investigated, but which he had been simply putting up with.

“This year, I’m going for a Poirot style handlebar moustache. My wife is pretty pleased when it comes to the end of Movember and I shave it off. But she is a GP and believes it is a good and valuable thing to do.”