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About Testicular Cancer
The testicle or testes is where testicular cancer begins (two are called testicles, or testes). Though it can afflict men and boys of any age, it is most common in males between the ages of 15 and 44. It’s a rather uncommon condition that’s also quite easy to cure if caught early and treated. The chance of mortality from this cancer is low.
Male sex glands that generate sperm and the hormone testosterone are known as testicles. Inside the scrotum are two walnut-shaped glands called testicles. The scrotum is a skin pouch located beneath the penis.
Even after the disease has gone beyond the testicle, testicular cancer is extremely curable. You may undergo one of several therapies or a combination of them, depending on the kind and stage of your testicular cancer.
Causes of Testicular Cancer
The exact cause of testicular cancer is unknown. Testicular cancer is only known to emerge when healthy cells in a testicle are changed, according to doctors. Healthy cells divide and expand in a regular pattern to keep your body running smoothly. However, some cells acquire defects that cause this growth to spiral out of control – cancer cells continue to divide even
when new cells aren’t required. In the testicle, the collecting cells create a mass.
Scientists have discovered just a few risk factors that increase one’s chances of developing testicular cancer. The majority of boys and men who develop testicular cancer lack any of the established risk factors. Testicular cancer is linked to the following risk factors:
● Undescended testicle
● Genetic history of testicular cancer
● HIV infection
● Cancer localised to just the testicle
● Prior diagnosis of testicular cancer
● Certain races/ethnicities
● Body size
Symptoms of Testicular Cancer
Signs of a testicular tumour are:
● The most common sign is a lump in the testicle (painless)
● The swelling of the testicle (with or without pain) or a feeling of weight in the scrotum
● Pain or a dull ache in the testicle, scrotum or groin
● Tenderness or changes in the breast tissue
If you see a lump or a hard section of your testicle, you should consult a doctor to determine if it is a tumour. Only a small percentage of men with testicular cancer experience discomfort initially.
Prevention and Screening
Many testicular cancer patients have no identified risk factors. Undescended testes, being a white male and having a family history of the disease are all established risk factors that can’t be corrected. Because of these factors, it is now impossible to prevent the majority of instances of this condition.
It is critical to diagnose cancer early. Once a month, men should do a testicular self-examination (TSE). Notify your doctor immediately away if you observe any changes in your testicles, such as lumps or nodules, hardness, chronic discomfort, or a testicle that is getting bigger or smaller.
After a warm bath or shower, when the scrotum is relaxed, the optimum time to undertake a testicular self-exam is while standing. It takes only a few minutes. To begin:
● Examine each testicle separately. Roll each testicle between your thumb and forefinger gently yet firmly. Feel the entire area. The testis should be the same stiffness all the way around. One testis may be somewhat bigger than the other,
which is typical.
● The epididymis and vas deferens are located in the vas deferens. Above and beneath the testicle, they are soft, tube-like structures. These tubes are used to collect and transport sperm. Just get a sense of how these wires feel.
● Look for lumps, oedema, or other abnormalities. It is not natural to have lumps or bumps (even if they cause no pain). It is not natural to be in pain.
● At least once a month, do a self-examination. Any changes in size, shape, or texture should always be observed.
● You should seek medical care if you discover a lump or other changes over time. It might be nothing, but if it’s testicular cancer, it can swiftly spread. Testicular cancer is relatively treatable if caught early. Speak with your urologist if you have any questions or concerns.
● Medical history and physical examination: Your urologist will discuss your health with you. They’ll search for cancer signals in your scrotum, belly (abdomen), lymph nodes, and other areas. They’ll examine for lumps, stiffness, or swelling indications. If you have a history of undescended testicles, tell them.
● Ultrasound of the testicles is used to look into the scrotum and check for a suspicious bulge. If your doctor wants to view your chest or abdomen, he or she may order further scans or x-rays. This test is used to determine whether cancer has spread to the lymph nodes, lungs, or liver. MRIs are infrequently utilized; however, they are sometimes required to examine the brain and spinal cord.
● A blood test is performed to look for tumour markers. Some testicular tumours produce these proteins and hormones.
● Tumour markers (AFP, HCG, and LDH) should be evaluated in the blood before any therapy, such as surgery. If cancer is discovered, tumour marker tests will be performed following treatment to monitor your progress. Some medications and
marijuana might cause HCG levels to be falsely positive. Inform your doctor about any medications you’re taking and/or marijuana use.
Testicular cancer is a highly treatable disease. While being diagnosed with cancer is always frightening, the good news is that testicular cancer is effectively treated in 95% of instances. The cure rate jumps to 98% if treated early. Although a man’s likelihood of obtaining HIV is 1 in 263, he only has a 1 in 5,000 chance of dying from it. If your health changes, make sure to tell your doctor. This will help them figure out if you need any more screening tests or treatment.
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