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(A-Z listing includes diseases, conditions, tests and procedures)
 

Testicular Cancer

Testicular Cancer: What You Need to Know

Illustration of  the anatomy of the male reproductive tract
Click Image to Enlarge

  • The testicles are the male reproductive organs located in the scrotum, just beneath the penis.

  • The testicles have two main functions: They produce sperm for reproduction, and they make testosterone, the main male hormone responsible for male sexual characteristics.

  • Testis cancer develops when one or more of the cells in the testicle grow out of control.

  • The most common cell type in the testicle is called a germ cell. Normally, the sperm develop from these germ cells. As germ cells make up approximately 90 percent of the testicle, the most common type of testis cancer is a germ cell tumor.

Testicular Cancer Statistics

Testicular cancer is one of the most common cancers in young men. It is estimated that 8,000 to 10,000 men will develop testis cancer each year.

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Ask a Urologist

Dr. Phillip Pierorazio

Facebook Chat

Johns Hopkins urologist Phillip Pierorazio answered questions about screening, types, treatment options and more during a recent Facebook chat.

See his answers.

Testicular Cancer Risk Factors

There are four established risk factors for testicular cancer. All men can take steps to manage their risk.

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Testicular Cancer Types

Most testicular cancers are germ cell tumors, but other types (like stromal tumors) also occur. Your doctor will determine your cancer type by examining cancerous cells under a microscope.

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Testicular Cancer Symptoms

Not all men with testicular cancer experience symptoms, but many cancers present as a small testicular mass.

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Expert Answers

Man running through a wooded trail

How to Perform a Self-Exam

Many are unfamiliar with testicular cancer and how easily they can play a role in detecting it. To help, testicular cancer expert Philip Pierorazio from the Brady Urological Institute explains how — and why — you should perform regular self-checks.

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Testicular Cancer Evaluation

If you or your doctor suspect testicular cancer, your evaluation may consist of an ultrasound, a tumor marker evaluation, advanced imaging and an orchiectomy.

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Health Promise Badge

Make a Health Promise

A routine physical exam is absolutely essential to preventive care. It typically includes a check of vital signs, heart and lung exams, blood work, height and weight measurements, and testicular and/or breast exams.

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Testicular Cancer Tumor Markers

Testicular cancer is one of the few cancers that secretes tumor markers. These three markers will help your doctor make treatment decisions.

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Testicular Cancer Staging

The staging of testis cancer refers to how far the cancer has spread. Staging is determined with information from the orchiectomy, tumor markers and imaging studies.

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Testicular Cancer Prognosis

Overall, testicular cancer has an excellent cure rate. Prognosis information can help men understand their risk of recurrence and disease progression.

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Testicular Cancer Treatment Options

Depending on each patient's unique case, radical or partial orchiectomy may be used to treat testicular cancer.

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Testicular Cancer Research

Drs. Allaf, Harris and Pierorazio in an operating room

Early-Stage Testiscular Cancer: A Laparoscopic Improvement in Treatment

When men with testicular cancer are no longer candidates for active surveillance, many are left with chemotherapy as their only other treatment option. But a new procedure — minimally-invasive retroperitoneal lymph node dissection — might provide them with better outcomes and fewer side effects.

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