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  • All a bit of a blur...

    Hi all - thanks to the guys for running the website - great source of info!

    Had a hectic weekend. Had dull pain in groin on/off for a week since i knocked it. Got worse thursday night - worse enouhg that i realised it wasnt a normal 'knock', and i felt a harder area on my right testicle. THis lump was really tender. It's been strange how my mind plays tricks - maybe it was always there etc... but i decided to have it looks at..
    GPs on Friday morning - embarrassing but he confirmed somehting wasnt right and arranged for me to see a consultant on Monday - i nod, scared at how quick it was all going.
    Consultant on monday - he cant tell if the lump is on the epididymis or the main body of the testicle,and books me in for a ultrasound scan tuesday (today)
    A week ago if you'd told me i'd have a bloke rubbing jelly into my nads, i'd have laughed at you. But thats what happened this monring. THe ultrasound confirms "several areas of change" on my right testicle - solid mass rather than fluid filled cyst. SO here i am waiting for consultant to ring me back about where we go from now - looking like surgery i nthe next couple of days

    Trying to be philosophical about it all - no point keeping it if its not doing me good. But nagging fears - if i only have one left, what if that goes wrong? Will my sex life be the same? Will my mood change? Will my g/f still want me (she's been great support so far)

    The consultant mentioned that they can pop in a fake testicle as they remove the other one - now i'm no male model, so i'm not expecting any great thjigns here, but can any of you tell me if this is worth it? I dont care so much about cosmetic appearance, but comfort/risk etc?

    Thanks for any help

  • #2
    tatt, IF things turn out for the worst, just know that your chances for cure are very very high. you will be alright. if cancer is present they will want you to have an orchiectomy(removal of the testical). pretty simple procedure similar to a hernia operation. then a biopsy will be done on the testical to determine treatment, if any will be needed. some forms are treated by the removal alone and some require further treatments. speaking from personal experience of having both testicals with cancer, you may want to consider some form of sperm banking or at least have a sperm count done before the orchiectomy. this may allow you to have a higher sperm count in storage for later down the road. your single testical will still produce sperm but this is just a safeguard approach. you will still have normal sexual functions after the removal. Hormone replacement therapy is needed most of the times in testicular patients. but its not anything to worry about at this point. as far as a prostectic, i wouldn't do it because of the un-natural feeling that most describe and some can be very uncomfortable if not done correctly. i believe you will have no problems in the female category. i personally don't miss mine at all. it wasn't that big of a deal for me. im just glad im going to be alright. i hope this helps you some but lets hope for the best and go from there! my thoughts and prayers are with you, brian!
    diagnosed 01/15/2005 bi-lateral seminoma stage IIa,4cm lymph node, right I/O & partial left I/O mar/2005, 18 days of radiation, remaining left I/O- aug/2005, surveillance, Wife did IVF oct/2005, DAD OF BABY GIRL born 08-02-2006!!! testosterone implants May 2008

    Comment


    • #3
      Tatt,

      Welcome. Firstly, my hope for you is that it is not TC! I would make sure that as well as your ultrasound that there are blood tests ran and possible CT scans to check you out good before a surgery.
      That said I myself just was diagnosed on May 5th this year and your title is fitting of at least my feelings still! I'll cut to the chase though, I talked to my doctor about a replacement as well when all this started for me. I was pretty sure that was for me. I have not even been out of surgery for two weeks and my feelings are changing around a bit. Though I have not decided one way or another I have time. If you are diagnosed with TC (again let's hope not) the surgeries are two different ones and the emphasis will (and should) be on dealing with the cancerous cells firstly. Your recovery, treatments, etc. will put you in at least an 8 week stasis before you can begin to cross the implant bridge. You should know as well that this is considered (at least in the states) a semi-elective surgery. As it was explained to me, the insurance companies will not pay for all of the surgery and at a minimal I would have to pay for the implant itself.
      This has been my experience so far and others might have a different experience, especially if someone has gone through it. I am just letting you know what I know so far.

      Again, my hope for you is that it is something non-cancerous in nature!

      peace and love,
      ken;
      Diagnosed 5/5/2006
      RT IO 5/26/2006
      Pathologic report 6/12/2006;
      90% Teratoma / 10% Embryonal Carcinoma / 2% yolk sac
      Pre surgery levels; ASP/HCG 863/451
      6/26/2006; ASP/HCG 17/1
      7/27/2006; ASP/HCG 5/<1
      8/17/2006 Modified rt RPLND 26 nodes removed
      8/22/2006 26 nodes reported cancer free

      click to follow my personal TC blog entries

      Comment


      • #4
        Thanks for the support!

        Just heard back from consultant - he's reviewed the ultrasound and is sure this is cancerous, given his concerns from the initial examination. I'm booked in for CT scan of chest, blood tests and orchidectomy on Thursday.

        sperm banking wasnt something i'd considered - as this has all happened so quick. is the drop in fertility significant with the loss of one?

        I'm not sure if its because things havent sunk in yet, but my biggest worry at the moment is the stress to my g/f, family (incluiding implications for my brother), and not wanting to be a burden. And then there's the big fear of losing the second one.

        Comment


        • #5
          Tatt:
          I'm sorry to hear that you have tc but try to not worry too much, this is one cancer that they have most of the answers for. Check the information found here so that you're prepared to meet with the doctors. Good luck on Friday.
          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.

          Comment


          • #6
            just deal with what is in front of you at the moment. there will be plenty of time to deal with the rest. familial TC is very rare but does increase your brothers chances. he should be more vigilant in doing self exams each month. the odds of something happening to the other testical are really small. so i wouldn't put to much emphasis on it right now. your sperm count will drop. the other will produce enough sperm, my only suggestion of banking was a precautionary one if you could afford the cost. i was just very glad to be giving the option to bank sperm or i wouldn't have had the oppurtunity to at least try IVF. get your scans and bloodwork done and get this behind you and things will fall into place!
            brian
            diagnosed 01/15/2005 bi-lateral seminoma stage IIa,4cm lymph node, right I/O & partial left I/O mar/2005, 18 days of radiation, remaining left I/O- aug/2005, surveillance, Wife did IVF oct/2005, DAD OF BABY GIRL born 08-02-2006!!! testosterone implants May 2008

            Comment


            • #7
              Tatt,

              I am sorry to hear your initial results though I am glad that you are here. As I was told about fertility, etc. If you do have an IO there will be a drop in testosterone however the levels appear to fluctuate based on the individual, stage, etc. Where fertility is concerned however what happens with this is more a product of the treatment plan post IO than the operation itself. You will do well to get familiar with;
              Testicular Cancer Resource Center

              as there is a plethora of information that is acurate about every aspect of TC.

              In most cases the levels return to pretty normal post IO and everything turns out OK. I do not want to scare you and Scott (admin on here) can probably give you actual numbers, but if you are considering children it can't hurt to bank a bit of sperm before you go in just as a precaution.

              Again, this is what I have been told and I am learning as I go (like most here).

              peace and love,
              ken;
              Diagnosed 5/5/2006
              RT IO 5/26/2006
              Pathologic report 6/12/2006;
              90% Teratoma / 10% Embryonal Carcinoma / 2% yolk sac
              Pre surgery levels; ASP/HCG 863/451
              6/26/2006; ASP/HCG 17/1
              7/27/2006; ASP/HCG 5/<1
              8/17/2006 Modified rt RPLND 26 nodes removed
              8/22/2006 26 nodes reported cancer free

              click to follow my personal TC blog entries

              Comment


              • #8
                Hi Tatt - you've probably been told already but just in case, you should count yourself lucky (!) that you have the most curable form of Cancer available! I still can't believe what's gone on in the last three months - don't know if it will ever sink in, but agree that the most difficult part about all of this was telling the folks.

                Re sperm banking, you don't need to stress about this as it's all free (inc the operation, check-ups and scans etc etc) thanks to your NI contributions (the good ole NHS does come in useful after all!). Re timing, i banked two weeks after my op and managed to produce a good enough sample - apparently, the little fellas that you kick out now have been three months in production, therefore in three months time the odds are that your count will be lower.
                It's all a bit embarassing at first but i soon lost all my inhibitions and just got on with it!

                I've just had all mine done on the NHS (finished my radiotherapy today ) and they've been absolutely fantastic so again, no need to worry about that either... compared to my experiences, you really do sound like you've got it early - i managed to 'sit' on mine for far too long.

                Anyway, this board has been an invaluable source of support and information and i've found it really helps to share what you're going through with people who've been through similar experiences - without it i could have easily gone out of my mind!!!!!!

                Good luck
                Martin

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by huckchef
                  Hormone replacement therapy is needed most of the times in testicular patients. but its not anything to worry about at this point.
                  My boyfriend was told by his doctor that it wouldn't be needed -- that the one testical would make up for it. Is that wrong??

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Tatt
                    Thanks for the support!

                    Just heard back from consultant - he's reviewed the ultrasound and is sure this is cancerous, given his concerns from the initial examination. I'm booked in for CT scan of chest, blood tests and orchidectomy on Thursday.

                    sperm banking wasnt something i'd considered - as this has all happened so quick. is the drop in fertility significant with the loss of one?

                    I'm not sure if its because things havent sunk in yet, but my biggest worry at the moment is the stress to my g/f, family (incluiding implications for my brother), and not wanting to be a burden. And then there's the big fear of losing the second one.
                    Hi Tatt,

                    I'm the girlfriend of a man with testicular cancer. He's finishing his last round of chemo right now. I'm his primary caretaker because his family is in California and we're in Chicago. It hasn't been an easy road, but it has brought us closer together. Don't worry about being a burden - just worry about getting better. Your family and gf love you, and that's what they're mainly concerned with. I promise. As for your brother, don't worry too much. Your diagnosis isn't a guarantee that he'll get it too. You're in for a rough time, but it is temporary and you will get better.

                    *hugs*
                    Good luck!
                    Eileen

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Individuation
                      My boyfriend was told by his doctor that it wouldn't be needed -- that the one testical would make up for it. Is that wrong??
                      The majority of men with one testicle don't need hormone replacement therapy. I've seen statistics suggesting that about 15% do.
                      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


                      • #12
                        scott, there sure are alot here that use it and alot that don't know they need HRT. do you think possibly the statistics could be based on the results of only a fraction of those who were actually tested and not those who don't know they are low? since i've been using this site it sure seems that more are finding out that they may be in need of some form of HRT. do you use any form? i don't think i've seen you post about it. and... statistically i wasn't suppose to have bi-lateral cancer either!! thanks for the info!!! brian
                        diagnosed 01/15/2005 bi-lateral seminoma stage IIa,4cm lymph node, right I/O & partial left I/O mar/2005, 18 days of radiation, remaining left I/O- aug/2005, surveillance, Wife did IVF oct/2005, DAD OF BABY GIRL born 08-02-2006!!! testosterone implants May 2008

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Tatt -

                          Your story sounds a little familiar - hit in the nuts by a baseball, they were both tender, and one had a hard spot - figured that one must have gotten the brunt of the hit. Did not even begin to think that I should see a urologist. Anyway, over some time the soreness went away, but not the hard spot. Finally I could not deny the fact that there was something wrong and went to see the doctor. What happened the next two days was a surreal blur. All those tests, I lost all dignity. Anyway, it was a 4 cm mass, and I was going to lose my right one - but the CT scan was clean so that was good news. The surgery was out-patient and my recovery was quick. Four days later I got the word that my bloodwork was normal, and pathology confirmed it was Seminoma and we caught it in Stage 1 (and the assurance from the urologist that if you have to get cancer, this is the one to get).

                          I was referred a medical oncologist and radiation oncologist. My urologist recommended radiation because it was effictive and has a track record. The medical oncologist did his job in presenting the other options (watchful waiting, single dose chemo, or radiation) and confused the heck out of me. The radiation oncologist told me that the only choice was radiation that the chemo option was unproven and had too many side effects (which was what the medical oncologist had told me about the radiation). But in the end it was my decision (I assume your medical system works that way too), and I opted for radiation treatment. Was it the right decision? I don't know, but it was a reasonable decision based on the information I could find. I did a lot of reading but found the treatment articles with the pros and cons of each confusing and in some ways misleading. Once the decision was made I tried not to dwell on it, but just to get it scheduled quickly to get it over with.

                          Anyway, I finished my 3 weeks of radiation treatments last week and it was not bad - a little tired, a little queasy, but I could still function quite well. Now I am looking forward to moving on and actually thankful that I got such a treatable cancer (many of those I met during my treatment have much tougher ones to beat). I am also trying to not dwell on the small chance of reoccurence, but will definitely be certain to monitor myself and follow-through with all of my follow-ups in the future. The whole experience has made me appreciate things a little more. It is amazing how one day we can be going along with everything just fine, and then the next day we are cancer patients. Every day is a gift.

                          Anyway, stay positive and you will get through this fine. I hope everything goes well with your surgery and the CT scan and bloodwork is clean.

                          My uncle summed it up best for me: "Just a bump in the road."

                          Good Luck.
                          Right I/O 4/17/06, Seminoma Stage Ib
                          RT (15 days) completed 6/1/06
                          All clear as of 5/8/09

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by huckchef
                            do you think possibly the statistics could be based on the results of only a fraction of those who were actually tested and not those who don't know they are low? do you use any form?
                            They could be, I'm not sure. The TCRC page on testosterone says (emphasis added), "While the jury is still out as to how many TCers have low testosterone problems, certainly not all guys who have had TC will have testosterone problems. The exact number who do is hard to quantify at this time - some doctors feel this is a very small number, others as high as 30%.

                            No, I'm not on testosterone replacement therapy. I actually haven't had my testosterone levels checked, and I should!
                            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


                            • #15
                              I tend to think that most guys don't get their testosterone levels checked. I ask Jason to do that at every visit and he just doesn't because he feels great. I don't know if that's a good indication of where his t levels are. I'm as bad as anyone with the physicals, I haven't had one since I was discharged from the army in 1972.
                              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.

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