Testicular Cancer Treatment Options in Maryland

Testicular Cancer Treatment Options in Maryland

cancer care

4/30/2021

April is testicular cancer awareness month which is dedicated to increasing awareness about testicular cancer and emphasizing the importance of early detection for reduced risk and increased chances of survival. Testicular cancer occurs in the testicles, which are located in the scrotum. The American Cancer Society estimates 9,470 new testicular cancer cases will be diagnosed in the United States in 2021, and 440 men will die from it.

Diagnosis of Testicular Cancer

Your doctor may perform these tests to diagnose testicular cancer:

Ultrasound

Ultrasound provides pictures of testicles and scrotum using sound waves to help your doctor check whether there is a lump inside or outside the testicle.

Blood Tests

High levels of tumor markers (proteins) in your blood, such as alpha-fetoprotein (AFP) and human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG), indicate that there is a testicular tumor. Also, a rise in AFP or HCG levels helps your doctor determine the type of testicular cancer.

Imaging Tests

An imaging test provides clear pictures using magnetic fields, X-rays, sounds waves, or radioactive substances to determine:

  • If and how far cancer has spread
  • If treatment is working
  • Possible indications of cancer returning after treatment

Bone Scan

This test is ordered if your doctor suspects your cancer might have spread to bones or other test results are not clear.

Surgery

If any lump on your testicle is suspected to be cancerous, your doctor may perform surgery to remove your testicle. Your removed testicle will be examined to verify if it is cancerous and its type of cancer present.

Computed Tomography (CT) Scan

It helps to determine the cancer stage by showing whether it has spread to other parts of the body like the liver, lungs, and lymph nodes.

Positron Emission Tomography (PET) Scan

It helps to detect small collections of cancer cells in the body and if lymph nodes that are enlarged after chemotherapy contain cancer or scar tissue.

Chest X-ray

It is performed to see if cancer has spread to your lungs.

Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)

It is performed only if your doctor suspects your cancer might have spread to your brain and spinal cord.

Stages of Testicular Cancer

After the testicular cancer is diagnosed, pelvic and abdominal CT scans are conducted to check if cancer has spread anywhere else and to determine its stage. Testicular cancer has the following stages:

  • Stage 1: The cancer is restricted to the testicle.
  • Stage 2: Cancer has spread to lymph nodes in the stomach.
  • Stage 3:The third stage indicated that cancer has already spread to other parts of the body. This could mean the lungs, liver, bone, and brains.

Testicular Cancer Treatments

Your doctor will recommend your treatment options depending on your overall health, preferences, and your cancer stage and type.

Surgery

Surgery to remove your testicle and adjacent or nearby lymph nodes is often recommended for almost all stages of cancer.

Radiation Therapy

Radiation therapy utilizes high-energy x-ray beams to destroy cancer cells. It is recommended to treat seminoma-type testicular cancer after surgery or if cancer has spread to distant organs like the brain. Additionally, if the cancer cells have spread to lymph nodes, radiation is often used to eliminate these cells.

Chemotherapy

Chemotherapy uses intravenous or oral medicines to destroy cancer cells. It is often recommended before or after lymph node removal surgery or if cancer has spread beyond the testicle.

High-Dose Chemotherapy and Stem-Cell Transplant

High-dose chemotherapy can damage bone marrow which is where new blood cells form. However, a stem cell transplant enables doctors to use increases doses of chemotherapy. A few weeks before treatment, blood-forming stem cells from the patient's bloodstream are taken, frozen, and then stored.

Patients are then given high-dose chemotherapy and will later get back their stem cells. Once these cells settle in the bone marrow, they start making new blood cells in a few weeks. A stem cell transplant is recommended to treat testicular cancers that reoccur after chemotherapy treatment.

Contact Chesapeake Oncology-Hematology Associates today if you have any questions regarding testicular cancer treatment or recovery.

Testicular Cancer FAQs

What are the chances of surviving testicular cancer?

Testicular cancer has a 95% 5-year survival rate. However, speak with your provider about your survival outlook as each patient's case is different.

 

Can you live a normal life with testicular cancer?

Testicular cancer is one of the most treatable cancers with high survival rates. Early diagnosis and treatment help cure the condition, helping you live a normal life.

Can a person have testicular cancer for several years without knowing?

Yes! When testicular cancer begins in one or both testes, you may not see any signs or symptoms. Symptoms may only begin to appear as cancer continues to spread.

What are the warning signs of testicular cancer?

  • Back pain
  • A lump or enlargement in either testicle
  • A dull or muted pain in the abdomen or groin
  • Pain or a feeling of discomfort in the scrotum or testicle
  • A collection of fluid in the scrotum
  • Heavy feeling in the scrotum
  • Enlargement or tenderness of the breasts

When should you consult an oncologist?

Visit an oncologist if you have pain, swelling, or lumps in your groin or testicle for more than 2 weeks.

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COHA

COHA is a leading group of oncologists that offer oncology services within Anne Arundel County, Howard County, and Queen Anne’s County, Maryland. We remain committed to bringing the best oncology and hematology services to the residents of this area. Our knowledge, skills, and experience will guide you toward the best treatment options for your health and lifestyle. We offer today’s most effective therapies, expertly and compassionately delivered in our infusion and medical centers.

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