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Paranoid about my paranoia

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  • Paranoid about my paranoia

    Hello, firstly I am relieved that forums like this exist though I had little doubt that they did. It's great to see that people can relate with others about problems of this sensitive nature.

    This is my situation: In Febuary/March I started noticing a lump, smaller then a pea, tucked behind my right testicle. It was more like a hard zit or pimple on the testicle itself and initially it was hard to find once I first located it. There was no similar texture on the other ball. I also noticed a slight ache in that general area, though it wasn't what I would classify as pain. Also having already read up about TC on the net at the time I thought it might be all in my head as these things can be psychosomatic. Still, I thought it better to check it out, so I went to a doctor. I wasn't entirely sure if it was getting bigger, but it seemed to be, but that could have also been because I have gotten better at finding it. Now you can see why I give this thread that name..

    Anyway, the doctor could not find it, so she referred me to a male doctor who agreed that there might be something there (though I had the impression that he wasn't entirely convinced). Cold medical examination rooms are the worst place for this sort of check up! Regardless, he understood my concerns and sent me for a ultrasound scan, which appeared to turn up nothing.

    The slight ache that I may or may not have been experiencing, if it was actually there or not, stopped.

    It is now six months on, and for the past few days I have started to get this lingering feeling of heaviness in the lower abdomen region. The lump I found back in Febuary is still there, and possibly very slightly bigger (though like I said, I've gotten much better at finding it) Sometimes it is lingering heaviness, other times its mild discomfort, but it is most definetely there. When I give the testicles a feel, the balls themselves feel fine, not enlarged in any way, but the lump to the rear of my right ball and the general discomfort in the general area is there and it has come to the point where I am entirely convinced that it is in no part psychosomatic.

    Be it a blessing or a curse, the internet had enabled me to study up on TC symptoms quite thoroughly so I'd hoped that somehow it was in fact all in my head. I also thought that I may have sustained some sort of minor injury because I cycle 6 miles to work and back everyday, but I have stopped doing that to see if it would help. It has not.

    Needless to say, I am going to make another appointment with the doctor (and hopefully a urologist), but I have already gone through two who seemed to find no cause for alarm, aswell as having had an ultrasound which turned up nothing. Whether its getting bigger or not and whether it is cancerous or not, the small lump is most definetely there and it was (almost) overlooked by two doctors and an ultrasound. Because the ultrasound came up with nothing, I thought perhaps whatever was there was too small to be serious and no cause for concern because it may have been natural, but as this discomfort continues to manifest itself I am getting extremely paranoid. I don't blame them for the possible oversight, it could be in a tricky place, but I fear the worst - that I could have a cancerous growth that is hard to locate and therefore is going undetected. Does anybody know if such situations with undetected cancerous growths on the testicles are common or ever occur?

    Also, I had the mumps in December 2005, I don't exactly know if this effects the situation. As for family history, my father (caucasian) tells me that as far as he knows, there is no record of TC on his side, but he has been in and out of surgery for prostate cancer in the past few years. My mother's family history (of the males of course) is extremely unclear because she is East Malaysian from a small tribe. So, medical history on that side is non-existent.

    On my next doctor's appointment, is it reasonable for me to ask for a blood test? Is this advisable given my symptoms and situation? Assuming the fact that the lump's apparent slow rate of growth is all in my head, another ultrasound may just turn up the same results.

    Any advice would be appreciated, thanks


  • #2
    Hi Mont,

    When i read your thread i was shocked to see someone who has the same level of paranoia as myself

    I am going to be honest and say that i don't think this is cancer but i am not a doctor nor urologist, so i could be wrong. I think infact maybe this is something else like a cyst or other growth that might have been triggered by the mumps virus (which can lead to infertility and the testicles swelling up!) or maybe the constant cycling.

    I have also been going through some serious times with regards to testicular worries and it's good to be able to chat with others about this.

    I assume you are 23 year's old? I am 23 myself and it's good to know that guy's are starting to sit up and take notice of their balls! It's good to see the message getting out and about, more guy's should be aware of the problems that can occur in the testicle area and should be able to visit a GP with no shame. It's all part of life after all.

    Explain to the doctor that you would like a blood/urine tests just to make sure nothing "nasty" is going on down their, make your worries clear and how you think that it might be difficult to detect during an exam. There is no harm in doing this if you feel it will ease your mind (make sure you explain this to the GP).

    Keep us posted on your findings!


    • #3
      An ultrasound should pick up any abnormality in the testicle but you wouldn't be the first to have a problem missed. I'm not saying you have cancer but if you feel something it needs to be investigated. When you go back to the doctor really try and see a urologist and ask the doctor to request a blood test. It is possible to have tc with no blood markers but it will give you an additional level of comfort when the test come back with something other then tc.
      Son Jason diagnosed 4/30/04, stage III. Right I/O 4/30/04. Graduated College 5/13/04. 4XEP 6/7/04 - 8/13/04. Full open RPLND 10/13/04. All Clear since.

      Treated by Dr. Rakowski of Midland Park, NJ. Visited Sloan Kettering for protocol advice. RPLND done at Sloan Kettering.


      • #4

        Testicular cancer is missed by the doctor the first time around almost 30% of the time. Since TC is so rare, they figure it must be something else. In this scenario, it is important that you remember to follow up or ask to be seen by a urologist -

        You may or may not fall into this 30%, but in order to be sure, go see a urologist. And try not to worry yourself too much. The symptoms you feel are common in TC, but can also result from the following causes...


        Left I/O 5/7/05, Stage 1(pT1)
        No VI or LI, Normal Markers
        70% Embryonal, 30% Seminoma
        1st child born on 8/08


        • #5
          I would definitely go hunting for a good urologist.
          I found a lump, which felt little bigger than a squashed pea, and when I went to the urologist, he could not find it on his own, I had to direct him to it. He said even if it wasn't cancer, they would probably still have to get in there and check it out...

          I went to get an ultrasound on my right testicle and they had a real hard time locating anything. Finally they found it, and I went in for surgery. In my case, it turned out to be cancer. But there are other things a lump could be besides cancer. You're still going to want to get it out.

          Find a urologist, and don't leave until he tells you what the bump is. It doesn't have to be cancer, but its got to be something.

          I'm 23, currently undergoing treatment for embryonal TC, already had my orchiectomy and am about to go through 9 weeks of chemo.
          Sleep Without Dreams - 63 days of Chemotherapy


          • #6
            Welcome to the forums, 63days! I'm glad you found us. Keep us posted as your treatment progresses.
            right inguinal orchiectomy 6/5/2003 > nonseminoma, stage I > surveillance > L-RPLND 6/24/2005 for recurrence, suspected teratoma but found seminoma, stage II > chylous ascites until 9/2005 > surveillance and "all clear" since

            Your donation funds Livestrong services for people facing cancer now. Please sponsor my ride!


            • #7
              When do you start chemo? Are you getting 4EP or 3BEP. How are the lymph nodes?
              Son Jason diagnosed 4/30/04, stage III. Right I/O 4/30/04. Graduated College 5/13/04. 4XEP 6/7/04 - 8/13/04. Full open RPLND 10/13/04. All Clear since.

              Treated by Dr. Rakowski of Midland Park, NJ. Visited Sloan Kettering for protocol advice. RPLND done at Sloan Kettering.


              • #8
                Welcome! Read your blog and your description of general anaesthesia was perfect! Your sense of humor will go a long way in getting you through this.
                Retired moderator. Husband, left I/O 16Dec2005, stage I seminoma with elevated b-HCG, no LVI, RTx15 (25Gy). All clear ever since.


                • #9
                  Karen - Thanks! I know I will.

                  dadmo - I start chemo on September the 18th, my afp markers have increased since surgery, so getting surgery on my lymph nodes wasn't a recommended option, instead I'm getting 3BEP.

                  Scott - Thanks, I'm glad I found this place too! I'm going to keep my blog updated with how things are going in general, and I'll throw in my 2 cents around here where I can.
                  Sleep Without Dreams - 63 days of Chemotherapy


                  • #10
                    23 years old here also, with similar symptoms. Ive been so worried about it that my stomach has been messed up for weeks i actually had to get pills from the DR for my stomach. like everyone else said.. its important you stay on top of it and bugg youre doctor about it. good luck with everything. and 63days.. good luck man keep youre head up.