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Testicular Cancer

Testicular Cancer: Putting It All Together

Wednesday, April 25, 2012 - 15:13

Contributing Author: Guy Slowik FRCS

Here is a summary of the important facts and information related to testicular cancer.

  • Cancer that develops in a testicle is called testicular cancer.
  • The testicles (also called the testes or gonads) are the male sex organs. They produce sperm and are the main source of male hormones.
  • Testicular cancer is one of the most common cancers in young men between the ages of 15 and 34.
  • When cancer is suspected, and other tests (x-rays, scans, blood tests) have ruled out other causes, the only sure way to know if cancer is present is to remove the testicle through an operation called the inguinal orchiectomy.
  • Testicular cancer is almost always curable if found early. Treatment depends on what kind of cancer it is, and what stage it is when found.
  • Treatments for testicular cancer include surgery, radiation therapy, and chemotherapy.
  • Follow-up care is extremely important in men who have had testicular cancer. Men who have been treated for cancer in one testicle have about a 1% chance of developing cancer in the remaining testicle.
  • Although any man can get testicular cancer, the disease itself is rare, accounting for about 1% of all cancers in American men.
  • One of the best ways to find testicular cancer in the early stages is through testicular self-examination (TSE) every month.
  • Men with one healthy testicle can still have a normal erection and produce sperm. An operation to remove one testicle does not make a man impotent and seldom interferes with fertility.
  • For those men concerned with esthetic appearances, an artificial testicle (prosthesis) can be placed in the scrotum. The prosthesis has the weight and feel of a normal testicle.

Testicular Cancer