Testicular cancer is a rare form of cancer that mainly affects young men aged between 20 and 35. The most common sign of testicular cancer is a lump in the testicles which is why checking yourself on a regular basis is such a good idea. Testicular cancer can spread very quickly although if caught early on it has a 95% success rate. Knowing what your testicles feel like normally is incredibly important as is knowing how to check them. Testicular cancer detection is not hard if you can spot the changes in your own body.
Symptoms of Testicular Cancer
The most common testicular cancer symptoms are swelling and/or a testicular cancer lump. Lumps are often found on the side or front of the testicle, they are pea sized and will feel hard to the touch. Other symptoms of testicular cancer may include:
• A heavy feeling in your scrotum
• A sharp pain or dull ache in your scrotum or testicles – this may come and go
• A full ache in your abdomen
• A general feeling of un-wellness
Depending on the stage of the cancer further signs of testicular cancer may be experienced. These will however depend on how far the cancer has spread.
Checking Yourself for Testicular Cancer
Testicular cancer detection can be done at home, so it is imperative to know what your testicles feel like normally so you can pick up on any abnormalities. Your checking routine should consist of:
• Try and examine yourself whilst having a warm shower or a bath – the longer you are in the water, the softer your scrotum will be which makes it easier to feel your testicles.
• Examine your scrotum slowly. Look for any lumps both inside and outside.
• Cradle your scrotum and check your testicles individually. It is normal for one testicle to be larger than the other although if you notice a difference to previous checks, you should schedule an appointment with your GP.
• Check each of your testicles for swelling or lumps. Both should be completely smooth except for where the sperm duct connects to the penis.
If during a routine check you find any lumps, swelling or abnormalities it is time to visit your doctor for a thorough check-up. Remember the sooner testicular cancer is caught, the higher the success rate.
Testicular Cancer Treatment
The testicular cancer treatment you receive will depend on the form of testicular cancer that you are suffering from and how advanced it is. The first treatment option that is always tried is removal of the testicular cancer lump however radiotherapy or chemotherapy may also be required. If the testicular cancer is in an advanced stage further treatment may be required to remove lymph nodes. Your testicular cancer treatment options will be fully discussed with you beforehand.
Testicular cancer is an uncommon form of cancer but one that can spread quickly if left untreated. Testicular cancer awareness is a great way to spread word of the disease and by checking yourself routinely, you can catch the signs of testicular cancer early.