How Testicular Cancer is Treated?
How Testicular Cancer is Treated is an article that aims to give you all the information you do not know about how testicular cancer is treated and more. We kindly shared the main headings with you;
What is testicular cancer?
When malignant (cancer) cells grow in the tissues of one or (less frequently) both testicles, testicular cancer is the result. The testosterone-producing sperm glands in your testicles are two walnut-shaped genital organs. They are located inside the scrotum, a skin-filled sac that is located beneath your penis. Testicular cancer is a dangerous disease, much like any other cancer. The good news is that testicular cancer is commonly curable.
What are the types of testicular cancer?
A mass or tumor is created when the germ cells in your testicles congregate, accounting for about 90% of all cases of testicular cancer. Sperm eventually form from germ cell development. From germ cells, two different forms of testicular cancer develop as follows,
- Seminoma: A malignancy that primarily affects people in their 40s or 50s and is slow-growing.
- Non-seminoma: It is a cancer that grows more rapidly than seminomas. People in their late teens, early 20s, and early 30s are the most affected. The four non-seminoma tumor varieties are as follows. Each one bears a name based on the kind of germ cell that gave rise to the tumor. Embryonal carcinoma, yolk sac carcinoma, choriocarcinoma, and teratoma are examples of non-seminoma cancers. Seminoma and non-seminoma cells can both be seen in some testicular cancer tumors.
What are the symptoms of testicular cancer?
A painless lump in your testis is the most typical indicator of testicular cancer. Additional signs include:
- Abrupt fluid buildup or swelling in your scrotum
- A growth or lump in one of the testicles
- A sensation of weight in your scrotum
- Dull pain in your lower abdomen or groin
- Intestinal or scrotal pain or discomfort
- A testicle that is shrinking (testicular atrophy)
Don’t be alarmed if you observe any of these symptoms because they might also indicate other illnesses. To be sure, arrange a visit with your doctor. It will be best for you if you are diagnosed at the early stages of cancer. The condition is more difficult to treat when cancer cells have time to spread because of delays in detection.
What factors contribute to the risk of developing testicular cancer?
Your risk of testicular cancer may be increased by numerous factors. Testicular cancer is not brought on by risk factors, but they may make it more likely to occur. Testicular cancer risk factors include,
- Age. Men between the ages of 15 and 35 are most frequently diagnosed with testicular cancer.
- Undescended testicles. Before birth, testicles typically fall into the scrotum after developing in the belly of a fetus. Undescended testicles are those that do not drop, and they may need to be surgically removed. Even after having surgery, having this disease from birth may raise your risk of developing testicular cancer.
- Race and ethnicity. Testicular cancer is more prevalent in non-Hispanic whites in the United States and Europe than it is in other races and ethnicities.
- Personal or family history. If a biological parent or sibling has testicular cancer, you might be more prone to get it yourself. Your risk may also be increased by hereditary genetic disorders like Klinefelter Syndrome. If you have testicular cancer in one testicle, your risk of getting it again in the other testicle is increased.
- Infertility. Testicular cancer may be associated with some of the same variables that contribute to infertility. To fully grasp the connection, more investigation is required.
What is Klinefelter Syndrome?
When a child is born with an extra copy of the X chromosome, he develops Klinefelter syndrome, a genetic disorder. Males who have Klinefelter syndrome are affected by a hereditary disorder that frequently isn’t discovered until adulthood. Klinefelter syndrome may have a detrimental effect on testicular growth, resulting in testicles that are smaller than usual and may produce less testosterone. The syndrome may also result in increased breast tissue, decreased body and facial hair, and decreased muscle mass.
How the diagnosis is made?
After examining a lump or other alteration you noticed during a self-exam, your doctor may conclude that you have testicular cancer. Occasionally, testicular cancer is found during a normal physical examination. The following common procedures and tests are used to diagnose testicular cancer:
- A health examination and history. To look for indicators of testicular cancer, your doctor will interview you about your symptoms and perform a thorough physical examination. They might check your lymph nodes for symptoms of cancer spread and feel your testicles for lumps.
- Ultrasound. Your doctor will probably request an ultrasound if they discover an anomaly during the examination. A harmless medical treatment called an ultrasound uses powerful sound waves to produce images of the tissue inside your body.
- Inguinal orchiectomy and biopsy. If the ultrasound reveals signs of cancer, your doctor may perform an inguinal orchiectomy and biopsy to remove the afflicted testicle through a groin incision. Your testicular tissue will be examined under a microscope by a professional to check for malignancy.
What are the additional tests that may be required for the diagnosis?
- A serum tumor marker test: A serum tumor marker test analyzes a blood sample to determine the concentrations of certain chemicals connected to particular cancer types. Tumor markers are these chemicals. The tumor markers alpha-fetoprotein (AFP), human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG or beta-HCG), and lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) are frequently increased in testicular cancer. Different tumor types raise various markers. For instance, seminomas can occasionally increase HCG but not AFP. HCG may be raised by non-seminomas but not AFP. Increased LDH levels may be a sign of cancer progression.
- X-rays, MRIs, and CT scans: X-rays are used in a CT scan (also known as a CAT scan) to create images of your internal organs. To determine whether your cancer has progressed to your abdominal organs, your doctor may do a CT scan of your abdomen and pelvis. To determine whether cancer has spread to your lungs, they may need a CT scan or regular X-ray. You might be given an MRI if your doctor thinks your cancer has gone to your central nervous system (brain and spinal cord). An MRI creates images of the interior of your body using radio waves and magnets.
What are the stages of testicular cancer?
Cancer staging is another aspect of diagnosis. The information provided by staging, such as tumor size and whether cancer has spread, is crucial in guiding therapy choices. The stages and their explanations are given below.
- Stage 0: In the testicles, where sperm cell development begins, abnormal cells have formed but are still there. GCNIS, or germ cell neoplasia in situ, is another name for stage 0.
- Stage I: The cancer is limited to the testis and may involve surrounding lymphatic or blood arteries. There may or may not be increased tumor markers.
- Stage II: Cancer has only spread to the retroperitoneum or the lymph nodes in the back of your belly. You are in stage III rather than stage II if you have lymph node cancer and mildly to severely increased tumor markers.
- Stage III: Cancer has spread to an organ or lymph nodes outside of your abdomen.
- Metastatic Testicular Cancer: The lymph nodes in the chest, pelvis, and base of the neck are where testicular cancer spreads most frequently. The liver and bones may have been affected by more advanced stages. Brain metastases from testicular cancer are uncommon unless the initial tumor is choriocarcinoma.
Keep in mind that it is crucial to get diagnosed at an early stage of cancer to start your recovery procedure as soon as possible. If you are showing symptoms or have doubts we advise you to consult a doctor.
How testicular cancer is treated?
How testicular cancer is treated? Health, treatment choices, cancer stage, and tumor kind are just a few of the variables that affect how you will be treated. Compared to non-seminomas, seminomas often grow more slowly and react better to radiation therapy. Chemotherapy is effective in treating both types of testicular cancer tumors. When seminoma and non-seminoma tumors are present in testicular cancer, your doctor will handle it as a non-seminoma. Your surgeon may prefer applying one of the below-listed treatment types.
Regardless of the cancer’s stage or the type of tumor, surgery to remove the affected testis is the most common treatment for testicular cancer. Your doctor might also remove your lymph nodes in specific circumstances.
- Radical inguinal orchiectomy: To treat both seminoma and non-seminoma testicular tumors, your doctor may perform an orchiectomy (testicle removal). Your doctor will make a cut in your groin during the procedure to remove the testicle containing the tumor. Additionally, they will seal off lymphatic and blood veins to stop cancer from spreading from the tumor site to other parts of your body.
- Retroperitoneal lymph node dissection (RPLND): Depending on the stage of your cancer and the type of tumor, your doctor may do this procedure. Testicular tumors other than seminoma had a higher incidence of RPLND. Your doctor will cut a hole in your belly during the surgery, and the lymph nodes that are located behind your abdominal organs will be taken out. RPLND is a treatment option for cancer that can also be used to stage the disease. The removal of malignancies that have spread to your lungs or liver may also be done surgically by your doctor.
High-dose X-rays are used in radiation therapy to eliminate cancer cells. After surgery, radiation may be used to stop the tumor from coming back. Radiation therapy is typically only used to treat seminomas.
Chemotherapy kills cancer cells by using medications including cisplatin, bleomycin, and etoposide. Chemotherapy has increased both seminoma and non-seminoma patients’ chances of survival. Depending on the type of cancer you have, chemotherapy may be used in place of surgery. It can be applied both before and after a radical inguinal orchiectomy. After a period of remission, cancer that has reappeared (recurred) may also be treated with chemotherapy.
What is the cost of testicular cancer treatment in Turkey?
Both advanced diagnostic techniques and thorough screening programs are available in Turkey for the detection of testicular cancer. This allows for the early detection of the disease when 98–99% of patients reach the 5-year survival threshold. The cost of identifying and treating the disease is influenced by the level of the clinic, the fees charged by the treating physician, and the medical services necessary to successfully manage the patient. However, medical care in Turkey will be 30% to 40% less expensive than in Western European nations.
The following is an estimate of the cost of diagnostics and oncological care in Turkish hospitals:
- MRI: From 600$
- Ultrasound scan: From 150$
- Cancer marker test: From 250$
- Orchiectomy: From 5,000$
- Radiotherapy: From 3,000$
- Chemotherapy: From 1,200$
You can also use the cost calculator below,
What can you do to prevent testicular cancer?
Although testicular cancer cannot be prevented, testicular self-examinations (TSE) can help you spot abnormalities in your testicles that you should report to your doctor. Any lumps, nodules, hardness, or changes in the size or shape of your testicles should be reported to your healthcare physician. Many medical professionals advise conducting a monthly testicular self-exam.
What is TSE?
A TSE can be finished in as little as two minutes. Many medical professionals advise conducting a monthly testicular self-exam. Follow these procedures to conduct a self-exam.
- Do the exam after taking a hot shower or bath. Your scrotum’s skin becomes more relaxed from the heat, making it simpler to detect anything odd.
- Each testicle should be examined with both hands. Put your thumbs on top and your index and middle fingers underneath the testicle. Your fingers and thumbs should be used to roll each testicle.
- Familiarize yourself with what is typical. You might detect a cord-like structure on top and in the back of each testicle as you feel them. The epididymis is the name given to this organ. Sperm is transported and stored by it. It is not the same as a lump. Testicles with slightly varied sizes are also common. Each testicle should normally retain the same size, despite the fact that the left and right testicles are frequently different sizes.
- Feel for any lumps. Lumps are frequently painless and can range in size from a pea to larger. Contact your healthcare professional if you spot a lump. Contact your doctor if you feel a lump or observe a change in the size of your testicles. Additionally, you should have a physical exam once a year.
Is testicular cancer curable?
Cancer of the testes can be cured. The good news regarding testicular cancer is that it is treated effectively in 95% of instances, despite the fact that receiving a cancer diagnosis is always serious. The cure rate increases to 98% when treated quickly.
Is testicular cancer fatal?
Although rare, testicular cancer can be lethal. However, early detection has a significant impact on your prognosis. Your chances of being cancer-free increase the earlier you see your doctor and get a diagnosis.