How beatable is testicular cancer? “If it’s found early, there’s a 98 to 99 percent survival rate,” says Rob Seaver, of the Sean Kimerling Testicular Cancer Foundation. The test: During a hot shower, gently roll each testicle between your thumb and fingers, feeling for any small lumps. Clear? Watch for these problem areas, too.
1. Testicular torsion
Each testicle hangs from a spermatic cord consisting of arteries, veins, and nerves. If the cord twists (usually spontaneously), bloodflow is cut off, causing severe pain. Go to an ER for an ultrasound—you’ll lose the testicle if the condition goes untreated for longer than four hours. A surgeon will untwist the cord and sew each testicle to the inside of your scrotum to prevent future torsion.
All veins contain valves to keep blood flowing in one direction, but sometimes the valves malfunction. If that happens in your scrotum, the veins will swell with blood, sometimes producing pain and a heavy sensation. While there’s no immediate danger from varicoceles, the resulting increase in temperature can cause a decrease in semen quality and testosterone production. Talk to your doctor about having the problem veins tied off to correct the leaky valves.
Bacteria can inflame the epididymis, the gland on top of each testicle that collects sperm and transports it to the vas deferens. The resulting pain is hard to distinguish from that caused by torsion, so go to an ER for an ultrasound, says Larry Lipshultz, M.D., a Men’s Health advisor and the chief of male reproductive medicine at Baylor College of Medicine. Antibiotics will fight the infection, and anti-inflammatories will ease the pain.
Source: Carolyn Kylstra, Men’s Health via MSN Health