What is testicular cancer, why is it, what are its symptoms, how is it treated? Those wondering about testicular cancer, where early diagnosis is possible with self-testicular examination.
Testicular cancer is the most common type of cancer in men between the ages of 20-40, which can usually be seen in one or both testicles in young men.
Its survival rates are incredibly high and it is one of the most easily treatable cancers today. If there is no extratesticular spread, the 5-year survival rate is 99%. (Even when there is spread, which is very rare. This rate drops to 70% at most, and this is a very high rate compared to other cancers). It responds significantly to chemotherapy even in the worst possible spread.
Conditions that may be symptoms of testicular cancer
painful or painless mass in the testicle
- redness in the testicle
- sharp pain in the lower abdomen or scrotum
- feeling of heaviness in the testicles
- breast enlargement (gynecomastia)
Of course, seeing one or more of these does not mean that you have testicular cancer; Symptoms of some testicular diseases such as epididymitis, orchitis, varicocele, hematocele are also compatible with these; but it is useful to see a doctor.
Surgery, radiotherapy and chemotherapy methods are used in its treatment. If the cancer is in a single testicle, there is no loss of fertility after treatment and you can have children. However, since chemotherapy and radiotherapy will negatively affect sperm health, the most guaranteed method is to donate to the sperm bank before treatment.
It is not possible to prevent testicular cancer; Although there are several known risk factors, many men diagnosed with testicular cancer do not have any of these risk factors.
Major known risk factors
- Undescended testis
- Family history of testicular cancer
But these are not things that can be prevented, and they are not enough for identification. Therefore, the most beneficial thing is early diagnosis after cancer develops. If you do testicular self-examination regularly, you can catch it early and overcome this disease with the least negative result.
Also, in testicular cancer, the surface of a specific substance in the body improves, and this substance is the same substance that rises in women during pregnancy. There are people who take a pregnancy test for joke or curiosity and go to a doctor when the result is positive, and who are diagnosed with testicular cancer in this way.
How is self testicular examination done?
- Once a month, after a warm or hot shower, you should do it in front of a mirror or during a shower. Since the scrotum relaxes with heat, you will have a healthier and more effective examination.
- First check your testicles for any redness and swelling.
- You should examine each testicle using both hands. Put your index and middle fingers under the testicle, and your thumbs on the testicle, slowly roll your testicle. Check if there are any irregularities, swelling, protrusions on the testicle surface. Repeat this for your other testicle.
- One testicle (usually the right testicle) may be slightly larger than the other, this is normal.
- At the back of your testicle, there is a soft thread-like epididymis, your hand will get used to its feeling in a few examinations, do not confuse it with a suspicious mass.
- If you feel a change in your testicle, redness, pain, swelling / mass, change in skin structure or pain in your groin area, please consult a doctor as soon as possible.
- Not every swelling / mass in your testicle may be cancer, but as soon as you feel a difference, it is useful to go to the doctor.
This short examination, which you will do once a month, will be a very important contribution to your health, please do your regular checks.