Healthy Living: Testicular Cancer
While not many men are diagnosed with Testicular Cancer, those who are can sometimes be very young. Health Reporter Marcie Fraser has this report.
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NATIONWIDE -- According to the National Cancer Institute, approximately one out of 300 men will develop testicular cancer at some point of their life and about 50 percent of them will be under the age of 34.
"If there is any mass or or any change in the testes, the young man should go to primary care doc who will then probably immediately send them to a urologist," said Dr. Andrew McCullough, a Urologist.
According to Dr. McCullough, even if testicular cancer is its' caught late, it's often curable. The mass, if found, is often painless.
"Usually it is kind of a pebble within the spongy testes," said Dr. McCullough.
An ultrasound often determines if there is a mass.
"That it will tell us the size of this tumor, it not tell us the type of tumor it is," said said Dr. McCullough.
The cause seems to be some type of genetic defect. So is there a treatment?
"Eighty percent of testicular cancer be cured by simple removal of the testicle. There are some cancers that are sensitive to radiation, there some cancers that are sensitive to chemotherapy," said said Dr. McCullough.
Post cancer fertility usually can be preserved.
"Most men will have enough sperm to have a baby, whether it is with IVF or inter-uterine insemination. We can actually freeze sperm, freeze semen before surgery and then use those afterwards," said said Dr. McCullough.
Well there's no way to prevent testicular cancer, some doctors recommend regular self-examinations, and if you have a young boy who sees a pediatrician, be sure to ask their doctor to be sure they have discussed it with your child.
A self exam involves the young man or boy and every pediatrician should be telling their patents they should examine themselves on a regular basis. Best time to do it is when things are relaxed in the shower.