Catching Testicular Cancer Early the Best Way to Save Your Fertility
Just as a painless lump in the breast can herald breast cancer, a painless lump in the scrotum can be a sign of testicular cancer. This disease usually strikes men between the ages of 15 and 35, when a serious medical problem is the last thing on their mind.
The good news is that most men survive this cancer.
“Up to 95 percent of men with testicular cancer are cured. The earlier it is treated, the greater the chance of success,” says urologic oncologist Andrew Stephenson, MD.
Most lumps discovered by chance
Although a painless mass — often discovered by accident — is the most common symptom of testicular cancer, the mass may become painful if it is injured, grows rapidly or bleeds.
Sometimes, a man will notice a change in the size, shape or firmness of a testicle, or even finds it unusually tender. This is also cause for concern.
If the cancer has spread, back pain, abdominal pain, coughing or shortness of breath may occur. Swelling of the breast or tender nipples may occur when the tumor causes excessive hormone production.
“If you experience any of these symptoms, bring them to the attention of your personal physician or urologist right away,” Dr. Stephenson says. “Early treatment may save your life and your fertility.” Learn more.