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Testicular Cancer: Symptoms, diagnoses and treatment

  • Posted on- Aug 26, 2015
  • 439 Views

Testicular Cancer is a rare form of cancer when the cells grow out of control in the testicles. The testicles produce male sex hormones and sperm for reproduction. They are also called testes or gonads.

Most types of testicular cancer develop in the sperm-producing cells known as germ cells, and are referred to as germ cell tumors. Germ cell tumors in men most commonly start in the testicles but can also develop in other parts of the body, such as the back of the abdomen near the spine, the central portion of the chest between the lungs, the lower spine and, very rarely, the pineal gland.

Testicular cancer is highly treatable, even when cancer has spread beyond the testicle. Depending on the type and stage of testicular cancer, you may receive one of several treatments, or a combination.

Symptoms associated with Testicular cancer

The following symptoms can be signs of testicular cancer:

Tests and diagnosis for Testicular cancer

Usually, men discover testicular cancer themselves, either unintentionally or while doing a testicular self-examination to check for lumps. Your doctor may also detect a lump during a routine physical exam. He may suggest certain tests to determine whether a lump is testicular cancer:
  • Ultrasound: A testicular ultrasound test uses sound waves to create an image of the scrotum and testicles. It helps the doctor to determine the nature of any testicular lumps. Your doctor can also track the location of the lumps.
  • Blood tests: With the help of blood tests, your doctor may be able to determine the levels of tumor markers, elevated levels of which are linked to testicular cancer.

Treatment for Testicular cancer

Treatment for testicular cancer depends on type of cancer, your overall health, and your own preferences. Here are some of the options:
  • Surgery: There are two surgical processes:
  1. Surgery to remove your testicle is the main treatment for nearly all forms of testicular cancer.
  2. Surgery to remove nearby lymph nodes is done via an incision in your abdomen. During the procedure, your surgeon will take extreme care to avoid damaging nerves surrounding the lymph nodes, but in some cases harm to the nerves may be unavoidable.
  • Radiation therapy: Radiation therapy uses high-powered energy beams, such as X-rays, to destroy cancer cells. It is recommended after surgery to remove your remaining cancer cells.
  • Chemotherapy: The treatment uses drugs to kill cancer cells. Chemotherapy drugs spread throughout your body to kill cancer cells. Chemotherapy may be suggested before or after lymph node removal surgery.

The outlook is good for most men with testicular cancer. This form of cancer is treated successfully in more than 95 percent of cases.

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