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Get The Facts on Testicular Cancer: Why Prevention & Early Detection is Crucial for Young Men. - Healthy News For A Healthy You

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Get The Facts on Testicular Cancer: Why Prevention & Early Detection is Crucial for Young Men.

The Testicular Cancer Awareness Foundation (TCAF) documents testicular cancer as the leading cause of cancer among men between the ages of 15-35. Every hour a male is diagnosed with cancer of the testes. According to the TCAF on average 8,500 new cases of testicular cancer are reported annually, with 1 in 270 being young men. What does this statistical data mean to you? If you're a male between the ages of 15-35, then it’s time to get the facts on testicular cancer! Regardless of age, there are other factors that place men at risk. Implementing preventive strategies and early detection play a vital role in men’s health, despite any given age group.

The Mayo Clinic defines the following risk factors:

1.  Congenital (born-with) abnormalities such as undescended testicles (Cryptorchidism). This risk factor is present regardless of surgical relocation of the testes after birth.

2. Conditions that lead to abnormal testicular development such as Klinefelter's syndrome, and other genetic abnormalities.

3. Family history of testicular cancer.

4. Males between the ages of 15-34.

5. Higher incidences are seen in white males.

Self-Examination:

Setting a monthly routine makes testicular exams an easy task to implement. Self-examinations assist in early detection, and prevent disease progression with prompt treatment and interventions. 

Guidelines on how to properly perform monthly self-examinations as shared in the TCAF:

1. Perform your monthly testicular exam after taking a warm bath.

2. Examine each testicle gently.

3. Locate the epididymis (tube-like structure) behind the testicles. Knowing the anatomy of the testes allows you to distinguish any strange masses.

4. Check for lumps or abnormal masses. They can be painless or painful.

5. Although it’s normal for one testicle to be slightly larger, you want to look for abnormalities in shape, size and color.

Click here to view a testicular self-examination diagram provided by the TCAF.

Signs & Symptoms:

If you notice any abnormalities during your monthly self-examination, or begin to experience symptoms like the ones listed below, please contact your physician for an evaluation and physical assessment.

1. A lump in either testicle, or in both testicles

2. A heavy feeling in the scrotum area

3. Swollen testes

4. Pain or tenderness in one or both testicles

5. Breast enlargement or tenderness

What are the Different Stages of Testicular Cancer?

Stage 1: The cancer is localized in the testicle(s)

Stage 2: The cancer has spread to the surrounding lymph nodes, but not to other organs of the body.

Stage 3: The cancer has metastasized, or spread to other organs of the body.

Tests & Diagnosis:

If your physician suspect’s testicular cancer an ultrasound of the testes and blood work is commonly ordered. Depending on the results of these exams, additional testing and procedures may be required. For men diagnosed with testicular cancer, a Computerized Tomography (CT) scan is ordered for a more profound look and accuracy of cancer staging. Visit the Mayo Clinic for more detailed information on tests and diagnostics.

Treatment Options:

Depending on the stage of cancer and underlying health concerns, a physician will specify treatment options tailored to your individual needs. Radiation can be used in the early stages to target localized areas and kill cancerous cells. Radiation can also be combined with Chemotherapy in later stages of cancer. Chemotherapy is the use of pharmaceutical drugs to destroy cancerous cells. Although some men prefer to refrain from surgical procedures, the removal of the testes (orchiectomy) is also an available treatment option.

The Mayo Clinic Comments further on the surgical removal of the testes:

Surgery to remove your testicle (radical inguinal orchiectomy) is the primary treatment for nearly all stages and types of testicular cancer. To remove your testicle, your surgeon makes an incision in your groin and extracts the entire testicle through the opening. A prosthetic, saline-filled testicle can be inserted if you choose. You'll receive anesthetics during surgery. All surgical procedures carry a risk of pain, bleeding and infection.

With such alarming statistical evidence among males between 15-35, it’s vital to stress the monthly testicular examinations. Regardless of age there are other related factors that can place men at risk of developing cancer in the testes. Stay proactive with your health, making it a routine to perform monthly testicular self-examinations. 

 

* All information shared in this article should be discussed with your healthcare provider prior to incorporating any suggestions. This article is for informational purposes only, and is not intended to provide advice or direct client decisions. 

 

 

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Yeneilyn is a Registered Nurse in the state of Florida since 2006. Her nursing practice began in the field of Cardiology at Mount Sinai Medical Hospital and expanded to care for clients in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU). She was provided the opportunity as LPN Instructor, which changed the course of her nursing career. She states, “Teaching nursing students expanded my view on positive influences nurses contribute beyond beside care. Nurses are central leaders in health education, client advocacy, and disease prevention.” Currently, Yeneilyn writes health articles and prepares Continuing Education (C.E.) courses for healthcare professionals. She continues her studies in the field of Nursing Education and evidenced-based nursing practice. In her free time she enjoys sharing time with family and friends.


For questions or topics of interest contact Nurse Yenny at: nurseyenny@gmail.com    


 


 


 

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