April is Testicular Awareness Month – Let’s Talk About BallsApr 5, 2023
Check out this video from Macmillan Cancer Support where Justin shares his story in this car-pool convo…https://youtu.be/m94u5rFOYwg
This month, make a special effort to become aware of the signs and symptoms and check in with your mates. It might save a life.
1. Self-examination: Men should be encouraged to perform a self-exam on a regular basis to check for any abnormalities, such as lumps or swelling. They should examine each testicle with both hands, feeling for any hard lumps, smooth or rounded bumps, or changes in size or shape.
2. Signs and symptoms: Men should be aware of the signs and symptoms of testicular cancer, which may include a lump or swelling in the testicle, pain or discomfort in the testicle or scrotum, a dull ache in the lower abdomen or groin, or a feeling of heaviness in the scrotum.
3. Early detection and treatment: Early detection is key to successful treatment of testicular cancer. If any other signs or symptoms are noticed it is important to see a doctor right away for evaluation and possible testing.
4. Risk factors: Men should be aware of the risk factors for testicular cancer, which include a family history of the disease, having an undescended testicle, and having a personal history of testicular cancer.
5. Prevention: While there is no guaranteed way to prevent testicular cancer, men can reduce their risk by performing regular self-exams, maintaining a healthy lifestyle, and seeking prompt medical attention for any concerning symptoms.
When testicular cancer is diagnosed, it is important to find out the extent, or stage, of the disease (whether it has spread from the testicle to other parts of the body).
One of the most effective diagnostic tools is imaging. Men will have a CT or (CAT) scan of their abdomen and chest. A CT scan is a series of X-rays of specific areas of the body that helps the doctors see if the cancer has spread. In some circumstances, a Positron Emission Tomography, or PET scan may be helpful as this is very detailed.
The treatment for testicular cancer depends on several factors, such as the type and stage of the cancer, the man's overall health, and his preferences. The main treatments for testicular cancer include:
1. Surgery: Surgery is often the first treatment for testicular cancer. The surgeon will remove the affected testicle, a procedure called orchiectomy. In some cases, the surgeon may also remove nearby lymph nodes to check for cancer spread.
2. Radiation therapy: Radiation therapy uses high-energy beams to kill cancer cells. It may be used after surgery to kill any remaining cancer cells, or as the primary treatment for some types of testicular cancer.
3. Chemotherapy: Chemotherapy uses drugs to kill cancer cells throughout the body. It may be used after surgery to kill any remaining cancer cells, or as the primary treatment for some types of testicular cancer.
4. Surveillance/Monitoring: In some cases, men with early-stage testicular cancer may simply be monitored with regular checkups, blood tests, and imaging tests to make sure the cancer doesn't come back.
It's important to note that testicular cancer is highly treatable, with a cure rate of over 95% if caught early. Men should work closely with their healthcare team to determine the best treatment plan for their individual situation.