Though it does not get much advertising, testicular cancer is the most communal malignancy among men 15 to 45 years of age.
Doctors don’t know how to prevent the disease. Fortunately, however, it’s now easy to detect and cure.
Before thirty years, testicular cancer is verified deadly for 90% of its sufferers. Nowadays the cure rate is 90% and that includes advanced circumstances.
To reduce the threat of testicular cancer, all men should examine their testicles on a monthly basis. Once-a-month self-exams must start at adolescence and last until age 50. Testicular cancer is occasional among elder men.
In addition, any man in this age group should make sure his doctor performs a testicular exam with each checkup.
Testicular cancer is particularly widespread in men who have an undescended testicle (whether it was surgically modified) and in person with a individual or family history of testicular cancer.
How to perform a self-exam
The best time to do a self-exam is while showering. Gently anchor your right testicle with your right hand, and run your left index finger over the testicle’s front and side surfaces.
Next, use both hands to check the back of the testicle. Gently squeeze the soft tubular structure (epididymis) that runs up into your lower abdomen.
Repeat this process on the left testicle, using your left hand and right index finger. The self-exam should take only 15 to 30 seconds per side.
If you find a lump or an area of tenderness, tell your doctor right away.
Before starting a program of monthly self-exams, have your doctor check out your technique. This will also give you a “baseline” against which you can compare future self-exams.
If you’re shy about touching yourself many men are consider asking your wife or sex partner to examine you.
One in three cases of testicular cancer is discovered by the patient’s partner.
Most scrotal lumps are benign. Noncancerous causes of scrotal lumps include
- Varicose veins of the scrotum (varicocele). A varicocele feels a little like a bag of worms under the skin.
- Sperm-filled cyst (spermatocele). This consists of a pea-sized lump, clearly separate from the testicle.
- Fluid buildup in the scrotum (hydrocele).
In examining a scrotal lump, your doctor will use his/her hands and check to see whether it can be “separated” from the testicle itself. If so, it’s probably benign.
If the lump is intrinsic to the testicle, there’s a good chance that it is cancerous. In such cases the doctor should perform blood tests to check for the presence of proteins associated with testicular cancer.
He/she may also do an ultrasound scan to see whether the lump is solid (possibly cancerous) or fluid-filled (probably benign).
Treating testicular cancer
Testicular cancer takes numerous procedures. Treatment must be tailored to the specific form, though all cases require surgical elimination of the testicle, along with the attached structures (epididymis) as well as cord (blood vessels).
Chemotherapy and/or radiation therapy may also be appropriate, especially if the cancer has spread outside the testicle. One type of testicular tumor, called seminoma, is especially vulnerable to radiation.