About Testicular Cancer Treatment
This information is intended for general information only and should not be considered as medical advice on the part of Health-Tourism.com. Any decision on medical treatments, after-care or recovery should be done solely upon proper consultation and advice of a qualified physician.
What is testicular cancer?
This is cancer that affects the testicles. It is a rare form of cancer and usually affects younger men below the age of 50. Testicles are two oval-shaped male sex organs. They sit in the scrotum on either side of the penis. The testicles are part of the male reproductive system and are enclosed in the scrotum- the sac of skin which hangs under the penis. Testicles produce sperms and testosterone which is a major hormone in male sexual development.
What are the symptoms?
- A painless lump or swelling in the testicles.
- A sharp pain or a dull ache in the scrotum or the lower abdomen.
- Breast enlargement from hormonal effects.
- Back pain.
- Shortness of breath, cough or coughing up blood from metastatic spread to the lungs.
- A lump in the neck due to metastases to the lymph nodes.
- A dull ache in the scrotum.
Types of testicular cancer
The different types of testicular cancer are classified by the type of cells cancer first begins in. These include:
- Germ-cell testicular cancer
- Leydig cell tumors
- Sertoli cell tumors
Germ-cell testicular cancer is the most common type of testicular cancer. The body uses germ cells to help create sperm. There are two main subtypes of germ cell testicular cancer; non-seminomas and seminomas.
Risk factors for testicular cancer
The cause or causes of testicular cancer are unknown, but several things have been pointed out, which increase the chance of developing the condition. These include:
- Having a family history of testicular cancer
- Having had abnormal testicle development
- Being born with undescended testicles
Your doctor will perform a physical exam to look for the signs of cancer of the testicles. Laboratory tests and imaging tests are used to confirm the diagnosis. Biopsy should not be done because it increases the risk of spreading cancer to the scrotum. Accurate diagnosis is crucial to ensure that treatment is effective and appropriate.
Most cases of cancer of the testicles can be treated if diagnosed early. Treatments include surgery, whereby the affected testicle is removed. The procedure done to remove the affected testicle is known as an orchiectomy. Although it is possible to remove tumors from a testis while leaving it functional, it is rarely done because the precancerous cells can spread through the entire testicle. Other treatments used for cancer of the testicles are chemotherapy and radiation therapy.
If the treatment option chosen has infertility as a side effect, you can bank your sperm at a sperm bank for later on when you want to have children. Surgical removal of the affected testicle does not cause infertility or the ability to have sex. After treatment, it is crucial to have regular exams to ensure the cancer is all gone.
Learn more about Testicular Cancer