Testicular Cancer

(Cancer of the Testicle; Cancer, Testicular; Seminoma; Germinoma)

Definition

Testicular cancer is a disease in which cancer cells grow in one or both testicles. The testicles are a pair of male sex glands that make and store sperm. The testicles also make male hormones. They are located under the penis in a sac-like pouch called the scrotum.There are three main types of testicular cancer:
  • Seminomas
  • Nonseminomas (yolk sac, embryonal cell carcinoma, teratomas, and choriocarcinoma)
  • Stromal cell tumors
Treatment will vary depending on the cell type.

Causes

Cancer occurs when cells in the body divide without control or order. Eventually these uncontrolled cells form a growth or tumor. The term cancer refers to malignant growths. These growths can invade nearby tissues including the lymph nodes. Cancer that has invaded the lymph nodes can then spread to other parts of the body..It is not clear exactly what causes these problems in the cells, but is probably a combination of genetics and environment.

Risk Factors

Testicular cancer is more common in men aged 25-35 years. It is also more common in Caucasians. Other factors that may increase your risk of testicular cancer include:
Undescended Testicle
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Symptoms

Testicular cancer may cause:
  • A painless lump or swelling in either testicle
  • Enlargement or swelling of a testicle or change in the way it feels
  • Feeling of heaviness in the scrotum
  • A dull ache in the lower abdomen or groin
  • Fluid in the scrotum that appears suddenly
  • Pain or discomfort in a testicle or in the scrotum
  • Lower back pain (in later stages of the cancer)
  • Enlarged breasts

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