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  • I might have TC... help?

    Hi everyone. Here is my story. First off, I'm 19, a college student and just moved from Orlando, FL to Omaha, NE. This past Sunday morning, I woke up feeling noticable pain in my right testicle. It kinda felt like being "blue-balled" but I was pretty sure I wasn't. A few hours later, the pain subsided but a light ache lasted the rest of the day and still 3 days later, I still occasionally have a tiny ache once in a great while. It was Sunday night though that I got concerned about the pain and started looking up testicle pains online and came across TC. After much reading and researching and making myself paranoid, I gave myself a self exam. To my surprise and dismay, I found a tiny pea size or smaller bump on the inside of my right testicle. I freaked. However, thinking back, I may have felt this same bump a year ago or so and just ignored it but I honestly can't be certain. So here I am, Wednesday now. I just got home from a doctor's appointment where the doctor felt me up, felt the bump, heard about my symptoms and light ache then gave me his diagnoses. He told me quote: "I'd like to tell you it's nothing to worry about but I'd like you to see a specialist, a urologist, so he can confirm that or possibly give you an ultrasound." So now I'm really freaked out. Not to mention, I don't have any health insurance. I just moved to Nebraska from Florida as I mentioned and am not covered by anything. Luckily, the doctor I saw today works with a nurse who is my girlfriend's mom so I got away without paying anything for today's visit. However, the urologist on Friday is going to cost me a fortune. Anyone know how much a ultrasound runs in cost? I know it's impossible to for anyone here to tell but what do you all think is the possibility that this is a cyst? If it is, do I still have to have surgery to get it removed? If the ultrasound proves it's a tumor, what is next, do you think? I know this is a lot but I really appreciate any advice/help/support. I could really use it right now! Thanks

    -Justin

  • #2
    Hey dude. It is good you are getting yourself checked. Remember, TC is very rare, and the abnormality you have found may very well be somthing completely harmless. Even if it is the worst, testicular cancer has one of the highest cure rates of all cancers. .

    I'll try to answer your questions in the order you asked them. An ultrasound is about 350 bucks from what I've seen. Hospitals are great at handeling situation where there is a young person without insurance.....you will mostly likely be put on a payment plan if you can't afford the treatment all at once. If the mass is on the spermatic cord, there is a good chance it is a cyst.....if it is on or inside of the testicle itself, there is a greater probability it is a tumor, but there is ALWAYS a chance it is a cyst. If it is found to be a cyst, you will probably not need surgery.....maybe just some antibiotics. If the ultrasound shows it's probably a tumor, the testicle will need to come out, and a pathology will be done to determine the type/stage of the cancer. 95% of testicular masses are cancerous, so they don't take chances with leaving it in there if it is found to be a hard, solid mass.

    Keep the questions coming! Educating yourself on the situation is the best way to handle it. You will be fine, and you have all of us for anything you need.

    Bobby
    4/26/07 - mass confirmed w/ no elevated markers
    4/27/07 - left I/O
    5/2/07 - Dx: 100% seminoma stage 1A
    Surveillance: CT/blood (6 month cycle)
    4/27/13 - 6 years cancer free!

    Comment


    • #3
      Welcome to the forums, Justin. First off, congratulations on having your testicular lump checked out by a doctor, and good luck with your urologist visit. It's definitely the right thing to do. One page with a price for a testicular ultrasound is this one (about $700). Don't let the cost prevent you from having it, though. I'm sure you can work something out.

      It certainly could turn out not to be a solid mass. If it's a cyst, it probably will be left alone or treated with antibiotics.

      If it is a solid mass, the next step is almost certainly removal of the testicle. One step at a time, but if you get there, a good place to get help with the financial issues is LIVESTRONG SurvivorCare.

      Keep us posted.
      Scott, [email protected]
      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!

      Comment


      • #4
        Hey Justin,
        It's good that you have gone see a doctor and gotten referred to a urologist. The symptoms you mention are fairly reminiscent of a TC diagnosis, and the ultrasound is key to making an accurate one. For that reason, it is crucial that you get that test done ASAP, especially if your GP suspects it. If solid masses are found, they are almost always (about 95% of the time) malignant, and the testicle will have to be removed. The lack of insurance is, of course, important; but your health supersedes any financial woe. You have taken the first steps, but now you need to complete the play and get the diagnosis issue settled.
        Last edited by Fed; 06-27-07, 09:39 PM. Reason: corrected shoddy grammar
        "Life moves pretty fast; if you don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it." -Ferris Bueller
        11.22.06 -Dx the day before Thanksgiving
        12.09.06 -Rt I/O; 100% seminoma, multifocal; Stage I-A; Surveillance; Six years out! I consider myself cured.

        Comment


        • #5
          Wow. Thanks for the super fast and very helpful responses. Let me present you all with these questions now:

          If I have the ultrasound and they see it's a solid mass, persuamably a tumor, what's next? A biopsy? What involves a biopsy? Cutting me open in a hospital or can it be done in an outpatient situation?

          If I have to have surgery, it is always done in a hospital I persume. Correct? What is the length of stay generally required following a surgery, assuming all goes well? I'm concerned about the length of time I may be out of work. I am already a struggling to survive college student trying to pay my rent and bills ontime and I need to be at work as much as possible. How long following surgery did you all return to your daily lives?

          -Justin

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by N323DL
            Wow. Thanks for the super fast and very helpful responses. Let me present you all with these questions now:

            If I have the ultrasound and they see it's a solid mass, persuamably a tumor, what's next? A biopsy? What involves a biopsy? Cutting me open in a hospital or can it be done in an outpatient situation?

            If I have to have surgery, it is always done in a hospital I persume. Correct? What is the length of stay generally required following a surgery, assuming all goes well? I'm concerned about the length of time I may be out of work. I am already a struggling to survive college student trying to pay my rent and bills ontime and I need to be at work as much as possible. How long following surgery did you all return to your daily lives?

            -Justin
            Hi Justin, sorry you have to be here but I am glad you found us. If they suspect TC they will remove the entire testicle, not just do a biopsy. The entire testicle will need to be checked, not just the small bump. When they remove the testicle, it will be same day surgery...you will be asleep for about 1 hour. They make a small cut in the area above the pubic line and pull the testicle up and out with out making a cut in the scrotum. You will be able to walk that same day and should be feeling like yourself again in about 3 days. Light activity is all you should do. If you get it done on a Friday you would be back in class on Monday...walking slowly of course.

            Let's hope you do not need this at all. But remember, the money is not the #1 factor, or insurance for that matter...they will treat you anyway and you have the rest of your very long life to pay them back. Your life is all that matters. we are here for you.

            M.
            Co-survivor with husband Boyce, Diagnosed 7-11-06, orchiectomy right testicle on 7-12-06- Stage 3A: Mixed germ cell tumor with inguinal seminomatous and kartotypic carcinoma. One tumor over 10 cm, second tumor 4 cm, Chemo 4xBEP: Bi-lateral RPLND Dec 2006, nerve sparing but left sterile.
            Current DVT
            Current testosterone replacement therapy, Testim.

            "You must abandon the life you planned, to live the life that was meant for you" ~wisdom I have learned from my family on this forum

            Comment


            • #7
              It's getting ahead of the program, but there's more detail about the orchiectomy (removal of the testicle) on this TCRC page and this TC-Cancer page.
              Scott, [email protected]
              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!

              Comment


              • #8
                Thank you all very much. Is the surgery generally done in a hospital setting or can it be done in a urologists office? I have an appointment at 8:30am Friday with my urologist here in Omaha so I'm sure he can answer all my questions but I appreciate everyone's help right now.

                Comment


                • #9
                  My surgery was done right at the urologist's office.....but I have to say that the clinic was very well equipped....probably more that the average urologist's office. I think most people have the surgery done in a hospital as an outpatient procedure.
                  4/26/07 - mass confirmed w/ no elevated markers
                  4/27/07 - left I/O
                  5/2/07 - Dx: 100% seminoma stage 1A
                  Surveillance: CT/blood (6 month cycle)
                  4/27/13 - 6 years cancer free!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Good News

                    Good news everyone... I went to the urologist this morning and after having him feel me up, he determined my lump on my right testicle was a calcium deposit and quote, "Nothing to worry about." I'm scheduled for a 6 month follow up on Dec 31st just to make sure nothing changed with it. I'm so freakin relieved right now. Thanks for everyone's help!

                    -Justin

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Congrats! That is great news!

                      Did they do an ultrasound? The reason I ask is because my urologists preliminary diagnosis was "a calcium deposit on the testicle," but the ultrasound showed TC as well. I've read that guys with calcium in their testicles, a condition known as microlithiasis, need to be extra vigilant in checking for TC. I had the calcium deposit on my testicle for a good 8 years before I got TC. I don't know if the two are related, but I would definitely keep an eye on it. There are research studies both for and against a connection between microlithiasis and TC.

                      Bobby
                      Last edited by fuse929; 06-29-07, 01:59 PM.
                      4/26/07 - mass confirmed w/ no elevated markers
                      4/27/07 - left I/O
                      5/2/07 - Dx: 100% seminoma stage 1A
                      Surveillance: CT/blood (6 month cycle)
                      4/27/13 - 6 years cancer free!

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Wow Justin, this is great news I have been thinking of you and praying for good results!
                        Co-survivor with husband Boyce, Diagnosed 7-11-06, orchiectomy right testicle on 7-12-06- Stage 3A: Mixed germ cell tumor with inguinal seminomatous and kartotypic carcinoma. One tumor over 10 cm, second tumor 4 cm, Chemo 4xBEP: Bi-lateral RPLND Dec 2006, nerve sparing but left sterile.
                        Current DVT
                        Current testosterone replacement therapy, Testim.

                        "You must abandon the life you planned, to live the life that was meant for you" ~wisdom I have learned from my family on this forum

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Thanks everyone! I was planning on getting a ultrasound but the doctor was so certain it was calcium he said I didn't need one. He's been in urology for 40 years so I trust his word. But he also told me to keep an eye on it, which I certainly plan on and come back in 6 months to be checked again. Works for me! Thanks again everyone!

                          -Justin

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by fuse929
                            Congrats! That is great news!

                            Did they do an ultrasound? The reason I ask is because my urologists preliminary diagnosis was "a calcium deposit on the testicle," but the ultrasound showed TC as well. I've read that guys with calcium in their testicles, a condition known as microlithiasis, need to be extra vigilant in checking for TC. I had the calcium deposit on my testicle for a good 8 years before I got TC. I don't know if the two are related, but I would definitely keep an eye on it. There are research studies both for and against a connection between microlithiasis and TC.

                            Bobby
                            I took Anthony to the ER when he came to me in pain. He had swelling, testicle pain and abdominal pain (like he had been kicked between the legs)

                            They did an ultrasound and seen what they called a "tiny hematoma;usually caused by injury" and that they did not believe was cancer, but told him to followup with an urologist to make sure. A few weeks later the entire testicle was solid and he was diagnosed TC w/ vascular lymph invasion

                            I personally think 6 months is too long for follow up. When it comes to TC I would much rather error on the side of caution, and have it checked again sooner because if it were TC it is so much easier to treat if its found sooner rather than later. I wish I had the TC knowledge I now have, before I needed to have it.

                            Son Anthony DX 12/11/06
                            L/O 12/20/06 Stage IIIA, 95% EC, 5% Yolk Sac
                            4XEP 1/29-4/6/ 07
                            AFP started increasing3 wks later
                            Residual abdominal mass found on CT
                            RPLND 6/8/07
                            Cancer in pathology-
                            80% mature teratoma, 20% Yolk Sac. --
                            No adjuvent chemo and
                            AFP normalised

                            July 22, 2010 ---- 3 years all clear!

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by mstlyn
                              I personally think 6 months is too long for follow up. When it comes to TC I would much rather error on the side of caution, and have it checked again sooner because if it were TC it is so much easier to treat if its found sooner rather than later. I wish I had the TC knowledge I now have, before I needed to have it.
                              I just caught on to the last couple of responses in the thread. What Tammy says is extremely important. No matter how experienced the doctor is, a potential TC diagnosis cannot be ruled out without the use of an ultrasound. Although the presence of a calcification does not necessarily mean there is TC, it is a common occurrence (mine had extensive microlithiases, and I know others in the Forum have posted the same). An ultrasound is also capable of distinguishing microlithiasis from solid masses suspicious of cancer. I must agree with Tammy and say that a 6-month-wait is way too long. The ultrasound will give you a more conclusive result; after all, images speak louder than words.
                              "Life moves pretty fast; if you don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it." -Ferris Bueller
                              11.22.06 -Dx the day before Thanksgiving
                              12.09.06 -Rt I/O; 100% seminoma, multifocal; Stage I-A; Surveillance; Six years out! I consider myself cured.

                              Comment

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