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What Exactly Is Wrong With Me? What Can I Do?

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  • What Exactly Is Wrong With Me? What Can I Do?

    I realise that compared to some of the stories I have read on here, my story is relatively insignificant. But nevertheless, I could really do with some help and advice to try and clear up the problem that I have.

    I am a recent graduate and have spent the last 3 summers working as a Porter in a hospital. Last year, about halfway through my summer work period, I felt a lump above my left testicle, possibly in my epididymis. It became very tender, but after about a week, the pain went away. I am unsure as to whether or not the lump disappeared or not though.

    Two months ago, while working once again in the hospital, I noticed the lump for a second time. I can't say for sure whether it had grown or not as I have a very poor memory, but I started getting a similar pain (unable to exercise properly, sex life greatly reduced as there is a pain where the lump is for several hours afterwards, discomfort when sleeping as unable to find a comfortable sleeping position).

    As I work in the hospital, I popped down to A&E, saw a doctor who originally said that it could be an epididymal cyst, then changed her mind and put me on a course of Doxycycline for 2 weeks, however that didn't work.

    I then went to see my GP, who also said it was probably an epididymal cyst, so he booked me in for an Ultrasound of my testes. They found nothing during the Ultrasound, save for a swollen epididymal head and a query varicocele. The radiographer told me I didn't have Testicular Cancer, so naturally I was relieved and he recommended I should try Co-Amoxiclav to see if it made any difference. It didn't. The report went back to my GP and it seems the radiographer had decided it was a varicocele.

    So I then had to see a consultant in General Surgery. He examined me, told me the radiographer had, in his own words, 'a fetish for diagnosing varicoceles', subsequently diagnosed epididymitis and put me on Cipro-Floxacin for 2 weeks. No help at all. As you can imagine, this was very frustrating as I had seen so many so-called experts and still they hadn't got to the root of the problem.

    I then got in to see the consultant urologist, who examined me and said 'yes, you do have a lump, and you have the beginnings of one on the other side too'. I said 'no I don't'. He then squeezed it and proved me wrong. After looking at my Ultrasound, he said that they have ruled out everything serious, and that I just need to get on with my life and take some paracetamol when it hurts. He also said I need to ejaculate more, claiming that an old wives tale called 'lovers balls' could well be relevant (a build-up of sperm causing discomfort). He said i have a swelling both sides on my epididymal head and nothing else.

    My theory is that the nature of my work in the hospital i.e. pushing, pulling, lifting etc, combined with how restricting the work trousers were around the groin area has aggravated the epididymal head. They have ruled out everything serious, for which I am immensely relieved and grateful, but I still have the lump and the pain. I have started swimming, which helps, however, every time I ejaculate it seems that I am back to square one. I sleep every night with a hot water bottle across my testes and still don't sleep very well. I also get a pain around the left side of the bottom of my stomach (possibly my bladder) after ejaculation. I am getting married next year and keep thinking that I will never have a normal sex or exercising life again. I quit my job at the hospital 5 days ago, but have not noticed a significant difference since then. My one hope is that somebody who reads this will have gone through the same thing and know what to tell me. If the consultant had told me I had an epididymal cyst, then at least I would have been able to deal with it and put my mind at rest. As it is, I feel like my life is in limbo.

    If anybody can help, I would be eternally grateful.

  • #2
    The doctor's are probably right that you don't have tc so don't worry about that. If possible I would visit another urologist who isn't associated with the hospital where you worked. Explain how much discomfort you are in and let them run all the tests again. There is no reason that you should have chronic pain and they certainly should be able to find out what the cause is.
    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.