Testicle (testicular) cancer is a comparatively rare type of cancer that affects the testicles in men. The testicle (testes) is located in a loose bag of skin called the ‘scrotum’ which is situated under the penis. The cancer in the testicles can affect the production of important male sex hormones and sperm in men as well as spread (metastasize) to other surrounding organs in the body.
Testicular cancer is highly treatable even in the event that it has spread to other parts of the body. There are several forms of treatments for testicular cancer and the surgeon/doctor will decide on the best form of treatment for your individual case depending on the type of testicle cancer, its stage, etc.
What are the signs and symptoms of Testicle Cancer?
These are the commonly seen signs and symptoms which usually indicate towards the development of testicle cancer:
- Lump/bump in either testicle
- Heaviness felt in scrotum
- Dull ache in groin/abdomen
- Sudden fluid accumulation in the scrotum
- Discomfort/pain in a testicle or the scrotum
- Back pain
Testicular cancer is known to normally affect one testicle at a time.
In case you notice any of the above signs and symptoms it is advisable to consult your trusted physician/doctor so that they may perform a complete diagnosis and determine the presence of testicular cancer. Testicular cancer is highly treatable if the patient gets adequate and prompt treatment at the right time.
What are the causes of Testicle Cancer?
In most cases the causes for a testicle cancer is not known however the reason behind the development of the cancer is the uncontrolled growth of the testicle cells. These cancerous cells begin to grow and divide in an uncontrolled manner which forms a tumor. The tumor in the testicles can affect the normal functions of the testicles.
Almost all the testicle cancers are found to originate in the germ cells in which the testicle produces the immature sperm.
Although the exact cause for testicle cancer is not known definitely there are certain factors that are believed to increase the risk of developing testicle cancer, such as:
- Cryptorchidism – In this condition the testes is formed in the abdominal region during development in the fetal stages and normally descends into the scrotum after birth. Men who have a non-descended testicle are at a greater risk of developing testicular cancer than others.
- Abnormal testicle development – Conditions that cause the testicle to be underdeveloped (such as Klinefelter’s syndrome) also increase the risk of testicle cancer.
- Family history – Certain genes are also known to increase the risk of developing testicular cancer in people with one or more family member suffering from this condition.
- Age – Testicular cancer is more prevalent among teenagers and young adults between the ages of 15-35 years. Although it can occur at any age.
- Race – Testicular cancer is found to affect white men more than people of African origin.
How is Testicle Cancer diagnosed?
Testicular cancer may be discovered either accidently by the patient themselves or it can be found during a routine physical examination. In case the doctor/specialist suspects the presence of testicular cancer they will advise you certain diagnostic tests to determine and confirm the presence of the testicular cancer.
These are the common diagnostic tests performed to determine testicular cancer positively:
- Ultrasound – A testicular ultrasound test involves using sound waves to create an image on the monitor of the testes and the scrotum. This test can help determine the composition of the lumps in the testicles to check if they are solid in nature or are fluid-filled as well as determining the exact location of the lump on the testicle.
- Blood test – The doctor may advise a blood test to check the tumor marker levels in your bloodstream. These are normally occurring substances in the blood whose level is usually affected in case of a developing cancer.
- Computerized tomography (CT) scan – This test helps give the doctor a clear view of the inside of the abdomen, pelvis and chest and can be helpful in checking for spread of the cancer to other surrounding organs.
How is Testicle Cancer treated?
There are several different treatment methods for testicular cancer and the type of treatment method suited for you will depend on various factors such as the type and stage of the cancer, your overall health status as well as your surgeon’s experience and your choice.
These are the common treatment methods for testicle cancer:
These are some of the surgical treatment methods for treatment of testicle cancer:
- Radical inguinal orchiectomy – This surgical treatment for testicular cancer is considered to be the initial treatment option for all types and stages of testicle cancer. This procedure requires the surgeon to make an incision in the groin to access the testes. The surgeon will remove the entire testicle through the incision and insert an artificial saline-filled prosthetic in its place if desired by the patient.
- Retroperitoneal lymph node dissection – This surgery requires making an incision in the abdomen to remove the lymph nodes near the testicle affected with cancer.
Surgery is an ideal treatment method if you are suffering from early-stage testicular cancer.
This treatment method uses high-energy beams of x-rays (or other particles) to destroy the cancer cells inside the body. This radiation device is useful in aiming and targeting the cancerous cells with precision and accuracy in order to avoid any resultant damage to the surrounding nerves or organs.
This treatment method may be used alone to treat early-stage testicular cancers that are restricted to a particular location and has not spread. This method may also be used in combination with other cancer treatment methods.
This cancer treatment method aims to restrict the growth and reproductive capacities of the cancerous cells through the use of medicinal drugs. Chemotherapy is useful in targeting cancers that have spread to other parts of the body from the originating location. Chemotherapy may be used as a stand-alone procedure or it may be used in combination with other cancer treatment methods for ensuring complete removal of the cancer.
Testicle Cancer Treatment in India
India is home to a large network of world-class hospitals and clinics that is spread over all its major cities. These hospitals and healthcare facilities are managed by the most experienced and well-trained specialists and doctors of India and are equipped with the latest and most modern medical and surgical equipments available today. Testicle cancer treatment in India is fast becoming a popular choice for hundreds of foreign visitors who visit India every year to get the most efficient and affordable cancer treatment.