Don't Ignore The Warning Signs of Testicular Cancer.
When caught early, testicular cancer is highly treatable.
What is Testicular Cancer?
The testicles are the male genital organs that are responsible for sperm production and male hormone production. There are different subtypes of testicular tumors. The two most common are seminoma and non-seminoma.
Testicular cancer occurs when abnormal cells grow out of control in the testes. It is highly treatable if detected early.
While not very common, the disease affects mostly young males between the ages of 15 and 35.
What are the symptoms of Testicular Cancer?
You may experience the following common symptoms:
- Testicular pain
- Lump in the testicle
- Testicular swelling
- Back or abdominal pain
- Altered hormones
What causes Testicular Cancer?
The cause of most testicular cancers is unknown, but various risk factors have been identified including history of an undescended testicle as a child and the genetic disorder Klinefelter syndrome, which results in two or more X chromosomes
How is Testicular Cancer diagnosed?
What to know before your visit to MidLantic Urology in Philadelphia and surrounding counties:
- During your visit, your doctor will ask you questions regarding your medical history and will perform an exam.
Other tests that may be performed during or after your visit:
- Blood work for tumor markers specific to testicular cancer
- Scrotal ultrasound: an imaging study looking at the testicle, epididymis, hydrocele sac, and blood flow to and from the testicle
- Imaging: This will be either a CT scan or MRI scan depending on your history and kidney function. These tests allow us to evaluate the urinary tract and assess for any spread of disease.
How is Testicular Cancer treated?
Most testicular tumors require surgical excision. In certain situations, systemic therapy may be utilized.
The gold standard for testicle tumor/mass removal is a radical orchiectomy (removal of the entire testicle through a small incision in the groin). Testicular biopsies are rarely performed prior to this surgery. In very select cases just the tumor can be removed.
If the lymph nodes within the abdomen are enlarged, surgical removal (Retroperitoneal Lymph Node Dissection) may be performed with or without receiving chemotherapy first.
Treatment following surgery may include:
- Surveillance: For early-stage cancer, the physician closely watches to see what happens following surgery, with regular checkups to ensure the cancer is gone.
- Chemotherapy: For more advanced cancers, chemotherapy destroys cancer cells that remain after surgery.
- Radiation therapy: Used for specific subtypes of testicular cancer. This high dose of x-rays destroys cancer cells that remain after surgery. It also is used to treat cancer that has spread beyond the testes.