Below the Belt Health for Men: Testicular Cancer
The “Movember” campaign isn’t just about growing your beard or mustache this month. It’s really about learning about common health issues that men face, and the topic of testicular cancer is one that hits the younger generation!
Testicular cancer is the most common cancer among men under the age of 40. A painless lump on the testicle may be the first (early) sign that a young man notices. According to the American Cancer Society, the exact cause is not known, but there is research being done to learn more about genetics and chromosomal changes that may produce this disease.
The risks of testicular cancer include:
Race (more common in white men)
The signs and symptoms of testicular cancer include
A lump in the testicle (noted on self-exam in the shower or in warm environment)
One testicle may appear larger or be tender
A feeling of heaviness or aching
Breast tenderness (although this is rare)
Or it could be an incidental finding during imaging of the testicles during an exam for infertility
Detection for this is often a self-exam in the shower, noting a lump on the testicle. An example of the self-exam can be seen on the American Cancer society website at: www.cancer.org/cancer/testicularcancer/detailedguide/testicular-cancer-signs-and-symptoms.
The next important step is to see your health care provider for further evaluation because early treatment is vital.