Testicular Cancer in men is a disease of the male reproductive system caused by Malignant Tumor in the testicles. However, Testicle Cancer Symptoms can be easily confused with many other conditions e.g testicular microlithiasis, epididymal cysts, and appendix testis(hydatid of Morgagni).
The testicular cancer is the most common cancer in males aged 20–39 years. In the United States, 8000 patients are diagnosed testicular cancer every year. In the UK it is 2000 men each year.
Lucky, testicular cancer treatment has high success rate of 80% through chemotherapy and other methods. Average 5 years testicular cancer survival rate is 99% in early stages and 74% in late stages.
But unfortunately, as breast cancer is a sensitive issue for women, so is talks about testicular cancer for men. Most men find it awkward and embarrassing to talk about issues regarding their health, that is why it is hard for them to open up to someone whenever they experience unusual changes with their body or behaviour. Most men think that talking about their health is not something a real man should do, but in all actuality, it does not make them less of a man to talk and be concerned about their health.
There might be strange changes with the body and other unusual things that are actually signals that there is something wrong requiring immediate medical attention. Some men may never know that these symptoms are actually leading to testicular cancer unless they talk and learn about them.
Testicular Cancer Symptoms and Signs in Men
Although Testicular Cancer is only one percent of all the cancers in children, teenager, young and older men; some signs may actually be of a noncancerous condition, it is still important to consult the doctor immediately. Here are some of the common testicular cancer symptoms and signs in men, that should be looked for:
Early Stages Testicular Cancer Symptoms and Signs
Some of the Early Stages Testicular Cancer Symptoms, are the testicular pain, testicular lump or increase in testicular size of either testicle. However, these symptom can also be caused by some other conditions such as:
A condition wherein the blood vessels in the testicle are swollen or enlarged
A condition wherein a cyst is formed in the epididymis, the organ that carries sperm from the testicles
It is another medical condition wherein a lump of fluid is formed in the membrane that encloses the testicles or scrotum
It is one of the most common conditions of the testicles wherein an internal part of the body such as a small organ or tissue tries to make its way through a weakened area of the abdominal wall
Most of the men intially ignore the testicular cancer symptoms and signs in the early stages. Because the swelling on the one testicle or both testicle can be painless. But, it is highly recommended by doctors for men who experience testicle swelling that they should undergo a thorough check up in order to determine, if the swellen testicle is caused by a tumor on the testicles or if it is due to a different medical condition. The sooner the doctors find out the cause of the swelling, the faster is the treatment.
Testicular Cancer Symptoms: Breast Pain
Breast pain, breast tenderness or breast soreness in men, medically known as Gynecomastia, is one of the testicular cancer symptoms and signs. This symptom is rare and requires immediate check-up. This occurs when the tumors in the testicles start producing high amounts of the hormone known as Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (HCG). This hormone stimulates growth and tenderness of the breast. These testicular tumors are also capable of producing female sex hormones called Estrogens which is another reason for breast development and the loss of desire to have sex.
Testicular Cancer Symptoms: Testicular Pain
Testicular Pain is a sharp pain or discomfort in the testicles could be an obvious testicular cancer symptoms and signs. The testicle or scrotum may experience pain even when it is swollen or not. The physician would likely prescribe antibiotics to alleviate the pain. If the prescription does not work, the patient is referred for testicular cancer testing.
Testicular Cancer Symptoms: Back Pain
Another testicular cancer symptoms is back pain. The pain can be felt on the affected area or at the back of the stomach/abdomen. However, the back pain is not a testicular cancer sign alone, because of other factors such as injury and infection.
Testicular Cancer Symptoms: Lump in Scrotum
Another testicular cancer symptoms is lump in the scrotum due to the unexpected formation of liquid. However, testicular lump can also occur due to another condition called Hydrocele, that would cause a heavy feeling to the patient.
In order to differentiate hydrocele from testicular cancer, the physician would do a Transillumination Test. This test is done by shining light through the testicle. If the heavy feeling is caused by hydrocele which is a noncancerous condition, the light would ultimately pass through. However, if the light fails to penetrate the testicle, the possibility of it being a testicular cancer sign is high.
Late Stages Testicular Cancer Symptoms in Stage 4
The later stages of testicular cancer may cause the cancer cells to spread to the other parts of the body, and, therefore, cause swelling in other parts like the neck or collarbone. Testicular cancer cells can also escalate to the lymph glands of the abdomen. When this happens, the patient would most likely feel the following late stages testicular cancer symptoms and signs:
- Shortness of breath that is often accompanied by coughing, backpain, chest pain or swelling of the chest
- Blood in the patient’s phlegm or sputum
- Difficulty in swallowing
- One of the most serious testicular cancer symptoms is Legs Pain. The soreness of one or both legs happens when the cancer cells have affected the blood vessels, resulting to blood clots.
Testicular Cancer Symptoms and Diagnosis
Unlike other types of cancer, testicular cancer can still be cured even if the cancer cells have reached the other parts of the body. However, like any other diseases, early testicular cancer symptoms and signs should not be taken for granted and must be consulted to the doctor immediately.
Testicular Cancer Symptoms Self Examination (TSE)
Doctors suggest a self-examination method to men as early as 15 years of age to 55. This method includes taking notes of any lumps, swelling, hardness or unusual pain in either or both testicles. There is no need to stress yourself too much because according to research and studies, less than 4% of enlargement of the testicles are proven cancerous.
Testicular Cancer Diagnosis Tests
The doctor may perform tests and examinations to determine the likelihood of testicular cancer that would include:
- Blood tests
- Urine tests
- Ultrasound imaging
- Testicules Biopsy to determine the presence and type of cancer cells
However, in the unfortunate event when the condition is diagnosed as testicular cancer, the earlier the patient decides to start with the treatment and healing process, the higher is the success and healing rate. Most doctors focus on treating the testicular cancer symptoms and signs. This approach is known as symptom management or supportive care.
Testicular Cancer Symptoms ICD 9/10 Diagnosis Codes
Testicular Cancer ICD 10 code is “C62 Malignant neoplasm of testis” and testicular cancer symptoms ICD 9 diagnosis code is “186.9 Malignant neoplasm of other and unspecified testis” which covers following disease synonyms:
- Cancer of the testis
- Cancer of the testis, choriocarcinoma
- Cancer of the testis, nonseminomatous germ cell
- Cancer of the testis, seminoma
- Cancer of the testis, seminoma, stage 1
- Cancer of the testis, seminoma, stage 2
- Cancer of the testis, seminoma, stage 3
- Cancer of the testis, seminoma, stage 4
- Cancer, descended testis
- Cancer, left descended testis
- Cancer, left testis
- Cancer, right descended testis
- Cancer, right testis
- Choriocarcinoma of testis
- Choriocarcinoma, testis
- Malignant Leydig cell tumor of testis
- Malignant lymphoma of testis
- Malignant teratoma of descended testis
- Malignant teratoma of testis
- Malignant tumor of testis
- Mixed germ cell tumor of testis
- Mixed germ cell tumor, testis
- Mixed seminoma teratoma of testis
- Nonseminomatous germ cell cancer, testis
- Non-seminomatous germ cell neoplasm of testis
- Non-seminomatous malignant neoplasm of testis
- Primary malignant neoplasm of descended testis
- Primary malignant neoplasm of left descended testis
- Primary malignant neoplasm of left testis
- Primary malignant neoplasm of right descended testis
- Primary malignant neoplasm of right testis
- Primary malignant neoplasm of testis
- Regressed malignant testicular tumor
- Seminoma of descended testis
- Seminoma of testis
- Seminoma of testis, stage 1
- Seminoma of testis, stage 2
- Seminoma of testis, stage 3
- Seminoma of testis, stage 4
- Seminoma, testis
- Seminoma, testis stage 1
- Seminoma, testis stage 2
- Seminoma, testis stage 3
- Seminoma, testis stage 4
- T3: Testicular tumor invades spermatic cord with or without vascular/lymphatic invasion
- T4: Testicular tumor invades scrotum with or without vascular/lymphatic invasion
- Testicular cancer
- Testicular cancer, descended testis
- Testicular cancer, L descended testis
- Testicular cancer, L testis
- Testicular cancer, left testis
- Testicular cancer, R descended testis
- Testicular cancer, R testis
- Testicular cancer, right testis
- Testis, mixed germ cell tumor