Getting smart about testicular cancer
There are a number of noncancerous conditions, such as testicular injury, which produce symptoms similar to those of testicular cancer. Viral or bacterial infections can cause painful swelling and inflammation of the testicle (i.e. orchitis).
Knowing your body and reporting any concerns to your physician is important for early diagnosis of testicular cancer. Ask a physician about any changes in your testicles, such as one appearing much larger or harder than the other, as soon as you notice it. This is the best way to avoid unnecessary worry and to win the fight against this type of cancer. Although cancer of any kind is a frightening diagnosis, testicular cancer is highly treatable and usually curable. Early diagnosis and treatment keep the odds in your favor!
Risk factors for testicular cancer
Although testicular cancer is very rare, it typically develops in one or both testicles in young men. Men who have had an undescended testicle as a child are at increased risk for developing testicular cancer as an adult.
The first sign is often a lump on the testicle, which in most cases is found in the early stage of the disease. The lump is often painless or slightly uncomfortable, but may cause testicular enlargement or swelling. Men with testicular cancer often report a sensation of heaviness or aching in the lower abdomen or scrotum. While some men have no symptoms at all, and the cancer may be found during routine medical testing for other conditions. In some cases, imaging techniques (e.g. Testicular Sonogram/Ultrasound) or testicular biopsies performed during infertility testing can uncover a small testicular lesion. If you are concerned you may have testicular cancer, whatever your specific symptoms may be, seek consultation with a Urologist as soon as possible.