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  • Confirmed mass today....orch. tomorrow.

    Hello all,

    I just wanted to let whoever read my previous threads know that my 3-week check-up ultrasound today confirmed that the antibiotics didn't work and the testicle needs to come out. It will be removed tomorrow at Hattiesburg Clinic......my uro tells me he can perform the surgery "blindfolded with a hand tied behind his back" which was reassuring.

    I want to tell my story so other people with similar circumstances may make the decision to see their Doctor with their TC symptoms. When I was 15 I noticed a small bump on the top of my testicle near the epydidimus (or however you spell it) and knowing nothing about testicular cancer though nothing of it. As a 16 year old, I went to my pediatrician for my driver's license physical, who at the end of my visit told me about testicular cancer and it's symptoms. My heart immediately sank, but stupidly I remained quiet with fear of surgery and stuff. I was worried for the first month after the Dr. visit, but didn't tell anyone. I researched testicular cancer all over the internet, and learned a ton about the disease during that time. But fortunately after a while, weeks turned to months, and my worries diminished......I didn't even think about the lump except for maybe once a month, and even then it was an afterthought. Once I was in college, it was hardly a thought at all.
    This past August I started graduate school in Mississippi, 1000 miles away from my home in Pennsylvania. Plenty of stress comes along with grad school, but no major worries about my health. About 3 weeks ago, though, I was laying on my back porch after working out. During this time, one of my roommate'ss dog decided to jump up into my lap while I was napping, causing some serious ball pain. I shurgged it off, and went upstairs for a shower. Durring the shower, I checked to make sure the dog didn't do any damage and examined my testicles, and to my surprise, I found NEW, extremely small lump on the back of my left testicle. It was very hard to notice.......I definitely had to squeeze the testicle to even notice that it was there, but after all the reading I did about testicular cancer I did in the past I was almost certain what it was at first sight.

    **I want to make a very important note here.......if I was to be doing a routine TSE exam, I would have never noticed the lump, for it was inside of the testicle and towards the back under the epydidymus. Pressure was definitely needed to discern the shape and solid texture of the lump. I assume for bloodflow reasons, it is much easier to find laying down in bed, but even to this day, the day before my operation, it is still quite hard to find standing. My uro told me even today that he can hardly feel it.

    After finding the lump, I went to my university health center the next day. The examining dr. assumed it was an epydidimal cyst, but sent me to a urologist just to be safe. When I first got to the urologist an hour later, he told me my testicles both felt perfectly healthy, but ordered an ultrasound and blood work just to be on the safe side. The ultrasound showed a small mass, so as a precaution my dr. placed me on a 2 week supply of cipro (antibiotics) and told me to return in 3 weeks for another ultrasound. He told me it could be one of many different things, and said that if it was cancer it was such an early stage that 3 weeks shouldn't be enough time for serious growth and spreading......this was re-confirmed by my personally with calls to an oncologist and also to the American cancer society. By stating this, though, I by no means advocate waiting........this was my particular situation and may be different from someone else's.
    3 days after my visit to the uro, I got a phone call that my blood work was negative for tumor markers, but this call only made me feel slightly better because I knew full well that there was definitely something inside the testicle.
    The next three weeks were torture for me. As a graduate research scientist, my expertise and passion is obviously doing research. I spent hours each day researching TC and other testicular diseases on-line in an attempt to learn more knowledge about what could possible be going on. Most of what I found scared me, such as things like "95% of solid testicular masses are tumors" and a little thing called the "rplnd" surgery.....which I'm still scared of. Other things I found made me feel better, like the fact that no tumor markers is a possible sign of a seminoma, the less aggressive form of the disease. Regardless, I was lucky enough to find this website and get some correspondence from a few members, namely Fed and Scott, who helped me a lot more then I think they realize by simply responding to me when I had no one else to talk to. I decided not to tell my family or loved ones about what was going on during this time, because with the distance between us, I didn't want them worrying if it did turn out to be just an infection.....again, this was my personal decision, and I don't recommend it to others.
    This morning I anxiously went for my 3 week ultrasound, which I have actually been looking forward to, and was told a few hours later that the testicle needs to come out. The dr. wanted to schedule my orch. for later next week, but I asked if it could be done tomorrow and he agreed.
    One of my biggest fears during this ordeal was not the disease itself, but telling my loved ones, my mother and girlfriend of 5 years particularly. A few hours ago I bucked up and called my mom, let her know what was going on, she it took it as well as any mother could. Unfortunately, she had an accident at work a few days ago and is in the middle of a ton of x-rays and MRI's herself with lower back pain......so I had to go easy on the details about myself to keep her thinking straight and not attempting to fly down here and do even more damage to herself.....but she will be with me as soon as she can.
    My girlfriend who I love more than anything was extremely supportive, being reassuring from my first few words. The first thing she told me was that no matter what happens I will always have her, which alleviates almost all of my fears of this situation. I'm truly. blessed to have her in my life.
    Anyway, this is where I am right now: I'm a 23 year old graduate student with final exams a week away, a lumpy testicle that is coming out in less that 15 hours, and a family that is 1000 miles away. I luckily have an incredible graduate adviser who is taking me to, waiting at, and driving me home from the clinic tomorrow. I also have 3 great roommates who I'm sure will do everything they can to help me out. Once I'm up to it I'll be back on here to let you guys know how the surgery went, and also to let you know the results of the path. Thank you all for listening, and If this long-winded babble helps just one person find the courage to go to their dr with their symptoms, I will have felt that I did my job.

    Thank you,
    Bobby

    P.S.......the lump I found when I was 15 turned out to not even be cancerous......it was a calcium deposit of some kind. I'm glad I had it, though, because it forced me to read up about TC and it's symptoms. That small calcium deposit and my roommate's damn little poodle may have actually helped my find the disease at an incredibly early stage.
    Last edited by fuse929; 05-10-07, 03:04 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!

  • #2
    Thanks for the thorough update, Bobby. I'm sure the surgery will go well. Let us know when you have the pathology report, as well as CT scan/chest x-ray results. I'm glad you've got good support! Hang in there.
    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


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    Comment


    • #3
      Not to make light of your situation but it almost sounds like a self-fulfilling prophecy along the lines of, "Have been fantasizing about TC since age 15!".

      Pathology will tell, and if nothing else you'll feel more comfortable in tight jeans.



      Originally posted by fuse929
      Hello all,

      I just wanted to let whoever read my previous threads know that my 3-week check-up ultrasound today confirmed that the antibiotics didn't work and the testicle needs to come out. It will be removed tomorrow at Hattiesburg Clinic by Dr. John Guice......he tells me he can perform the surgery "blindfolded with a hand tied behind his back" which was reassuring. Does anyone else have experience with him?

      I want to tell my story so other people with similar circumstances may make the decision to see their Doctor with their TC symptoms. When I was 15 I noticed a small bump on the top of my testicle near the epydidimus (or however you spell it) and knowing nothing about testicular cancer though nothing of it. As a 16 year old, I went to my pediatrician for my driver's license physical, who at the end of my visit told me about testicular cancer and it's symptoms. My heart immediately sank, but stupidly I remained quiet with fear of surgery and stuff. I was worried for the first month after the Dr. visit, but didn't tell anyone. I researched testicular cancer all over the internet, and learned a ton about the disease during that time. But fortunately after a while, weeks turned to months, and my worries diminished......I didn't even think about the lump except for maybe once a month, and even then it was an afterthought. Once I was in college, it was hardly a thought at all.
      This past August I started graduate school in Mississippi, 1000 miles away from my home in Pennsylvania. Plenty of stress comes along with grad school, but no major worries about my health. About 3 weeks ago, though, I was laying on my back porch after working out. During this time, one of my roommate'ss dog decided to jump up into my lap while I was napping, causing some serious ball pain. I shurgged it off, and went upstairs for a shower. Durring the shower, I checked to make sure the dog didn't do any damage and examined my testicles, and to my surprise, I found NEW, extremely small lump on the back of my left testicle. It was very hard to notice.......I definitely had to squeeze the testicle to even notice that it was there, but after all the reading I did about testicular cancer I did in the past I was almost certain what it was at first sight.

      **I want to make a very important note here.......if I was to be doing a routine TSE exam, I would have never noticed the lump, for it was inside of the testicle and towards the back under the epydidymus. Pressure was definitely needed to discern the shape and solid texture of the lump. I assume for bloodflow reasons, it is much easier to find laying down in bed, but even to this day, the day before my operation, it is still quite hard to find standing. My uro told me even today that he can hardly feel it.

      After finding the lump, I went to my university health center the next day. The examining dr. assumed it was an epydidimal cyst, but sent me to a urologist just to be safe. When I first got to the urologist an hour later, he told me my testicles both felt perfectly healthy, but ordered an ultrasound and blood work just to be on the safe side. The ultrasound showed a small mass, so as a precaution my dr. placed me on a 2 week supply of cipro (antibiotics) and told me to return in 3 weeks for another ultrasound. He told me it could be one of many different things, and said that if it was cancer it was such an early stage that 3 weeks shouldn't be enough time for serious growth and spreading......this was re-confirmed by my personally with calls to an oncologist and also to the American cancer society. By stating this, though, I by no means advocate waiting........this was my particular situation and may be different from someone else's.
      3 days after my visit to the uro, I got a phone call that my blood work was negative for tumor markers, but this call only made me feel slightly better because I knew full well that there was definitely something inside the testicle.
      The next three weeks were torture for me. As a graduate research scientist, my expertise and passion is obviously doing research. I spent hours each day researching TC and other testicular diseases on-line in an attempt to learn more knowledge about what could possible be going on. Most of what I found scared me, such as things like "95% of solid testicular masses are tumors" and a little thing called the "rplnd" surgery.....which I'm still scared of. Other things I found made me feel better, like the fact that no tumor markers is a possible sign of a seminoma, the less aggressive form of the disease. Regardless, I was lucky enough to find this website and get some correspondence from a few members, namely Fed and Scott, who helped me a lot more then I think they realize by simply responding to me when I had no one else to talk to. I decided not to tell my family or loved ones about what was going on during this time, because with the distance between us, I didn't want them worrying if it did turn out to be just an infection.....again, this was my personal decision, and I don't recommend it to others.
      This morning I anxiously went for my 3 week ultrasound, which I have actually been looking forward to, and was told a few hours later that the testicle needs to come out. The dr. wanted to schedule my orch. for later next week, but I asked if it could be done tomorrow and he agreed.
      One of my biggest fears during this ordeal was not the disease itself, but telling my loved ones, my mother and girlfriend of 5 years particularly. A few hours ago I bucked up and called my mom, let her know what was going on, she it took it as well as any mother could. Unfortunately, she had an accident at work a few days ago and is in the middle of a ton of x-rays and MRI's herself with lower back pain......so I had to go easy on the details about myself to keep her thinking straight and not attempting to fly down here and do even more damage to herself.....but she will be with me as soon as she can.
      My girlfriend who I love more than anything was extremely supportive, being reassuring from my first few words. The first thing she told me was that no matter what happens I will always have her, which alleviates almost all of my fears of this situation. I'm truly. blessed to have her in my life.
      Anyway, this is where I am right now: I'm a 23 year old graduate student with final exams a week away, a lumpy testicle that is coming out in less that 15 hours, and a family that is 1000 miles away. I luckily have an incredible graduate adviser who is taking me to, waiting at, and driving me home from the clinic tomorrow. I also have 3 great roommates who I'm sure will do everything they can to help me out. Once I'm up to it I'll be back on here to let you guys know how the surgery went, and also to let you know the results of the path. Thank you all for listening, and If this long-winded babble helps just one person find the courage to go to their dr with their symptoms, I will have felt that I did my job.

      Thank you,
      Bobby

      P.S.......the lump I found when I was 15 turned out to not even be cancerous......it was a calcium deposit of some kind. I'm glad I had it, though, because it forced me to read up about TC and it's symptoms. That small calcium deposit and my roommate's damn little poodle may have actually helped my find the disease at an incredibly early stage.

      Comment


      • #4
        Hey Champ,

        Although it's still up in the air whether the mass is cancer or not, I have to commend you for the initiative you have taken to learn as much as possible about what may be going on with you. You make all of us scientists proud .

        After I was tentatively diagnosed in the ER (in fact, the first one to "admit" that it was cancer was my urologist at the follow-up several days later), the hardest part was telling the family. Convincing my wife that despite the possibility of having testicular cancer I would be cured was the easy part, but the rest of my family had endured the ailment of my grandmother who fought breast cancer like a trooper, and she eventually succumbed to it. I had to wait a full two days before I was mentally settled in to pass around the news, and believe me, it was not easy.

        Despite all this, it's great that you are having things taken care of promptly. Don't do any heavy lifting for 4-6 weeks. Take the pain meds if needed, but don't overdo it, since narcotics will constipate you, and the last thing you'll want to do is to strain while going to do "number two". Don't watch comedy... laughing will hurt. Although you should be able to return to a somewhat normal routine within a week, I would try to petition your Dean (with the help of our advisor) to postpone your exams until you are up for taking them; however, by no means should you put your life on hold for this. I've come to think that a sense of normalcy goes a long way in aiding with the recovery. And wear sweatpants; they are the most comfortable kind of attire post I/O.

        You have a great support system in place, and that will help carry you through. Waiting for the path report will suck, but you can kill time by prepping for finals. Whether it's TC or not, you will be fine, and with the good attitude you have, you will come out on top. You will be shredding by winter without a hitch. Best of luck with the surgery. We're pulling for you.
        "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
          Please don't tell me you are from Downingtown, PA!!! Glad that you had responsive doctors and are well on the way to getting your life back in order. Dianne
          Spouse: I/O 8/80; embryonal, seminoma, teratoma; RPLND 9/80 - no reoccurrence - HRT 8/80; bladder cancer 11/97; reoccurrence: 4X
          Son: I/O 11/04; embryonal, teratoma; VI; 3XBEP; relapse 5/08; RPLND 6/18/08 - path: mature teratoma

          Comment


          • #6
            Hey all,

            Thanks for all the support! I've been home for about 7 hours now and I feel great. There is hardly any pain....just a slight discomfort......and I haven't needed to take any of the meds yet. The uro told me that the surgery couldn't have gone any better, and he said there is visually no sign of any type of spreading.....which is nice to hear but still anxious for the path. I go back a week from today for the full report. It really means a lot to me to receive all of this advice! The only thing I ask for right now is just a few prayers for a good report. I'm by no means a highly religious person, but I truly feel God was there with me today.......it's the only way to explain my confidence going into the surgery and my excellent condition right now.

            Dianne - haha you can relax, I'm from the Poconos

            Fed - thanks for the advice and reassurance! it means a ton, believe me. I see your from Mass.....I'll be up Boston in August for an American Chemical Society conference.

            Rover - thanks for the encouragement too! haha luckily the roommate with the poodle is a girl......not sure we would have let a guy with a poodle move in! she is being a great nurse.

            Thanks,
            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


            • #7
              Bobby, I'm glad things are going smoother for you. Just rest and things will get better. Let us know when pathology returns on make-up of whatever is in there. Just remember that you could possibly be cured already if it's a tumor.
              I live a little north of you in the Jackson metro area. I'll be glad to help you out in anyway I can!
              I hope the poodle is not a "lapdog"!!!

              My thoughts an prayers,
              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


              • #8
                thoughts for you

                You've got it.....the thoughts and prayers. Being 23, Russell is very much alive on this earth...yet there have been many times lately he would pause and then share that he could "feel" the prayers. He just returned from Guatemala, a thank-you in motion for all who helped and prayed. Sometimes it all goes beyond words for me. None the less, glad to hear you are doing well and will set some special energy your way. Take care, Russell's Mom, Sharon
                Click here to support my LIVESTRONG Challenge with Team LOVEstrong.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by fuse929
                  Fed - thanks for the advice and reassurance! it means a ton, believe me. I see your from Mass.....I'll be up Boston in August for an American Chemical Society conference.
                  Hey man, I'm just glad I was able to help. I will definitely be in town for the ACS meeting (I might be presenting, as well). We'll have to get together and go out for a drink. I'm sending good vibes so the path comes out as positive as can be.
                  "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


                  • #10
                    Hey guys,

                    What are the chances an orch. will result in need of testosterone supplements? Do almost all survivors need testosterone, or will only a few? Are there any stats? Have any of you had short or long term side effects of your orch. related to low testosterone symptoms?

                    Thanks,
                    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


                    • #11
                      for us

                      Russell has been doing great. Still has all his manly features...including the sense of humor and appreciations! Take care, Russell's Mom, Sharon
                      Click here to support my LIVESTRONG Challenge with Team LOVEstrong.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Thanks Sharon.......the more research I'm doing on people post I/O relative to TRT the more I'm seeing that it isn't always necessary.....this is very comforting........emotionally and financially haha.
                        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


                        • #13
                          Hey Guys,

                          Phenomenal news!!! I just had a 2-day-early unexpected call from my uro who told me my path report confirmed a 100% seminoma with no invasion of any type! He said that it looked like there wasn't even any invasion to the retis testis or however you spell it (cover that surrounds the testicle to my knowledge), which I'm told means that it was caught as early as possible. I go tomorrow for blood work and the CT scan just to be sure it's all gone, but right now I feel like a million bucks. Obviously I still have worries and I'm still thinking a second opinion is in order just to be safe, but I feel this is great news and I want to thank everyone for the encouragement and prayers thus far. I'll let you guys know how the CT scan turns out when I get the report.....hopefully by Friday.

                          Thanks!

                          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


                          • #14
                            Kick ass, dude! That is great news! With such great results (pending, of course, your radiology and bloodwork), there is a very good chance you are already cured. Best of luck with the remainder of the labs,
                            "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


                            • #15
                              Great news, Bobby! I think you are going to be one of the VERY lucky ones! Dianne
                              Spouse: I/O 8/80; embryonal, seminoma, teratoma; RPLND 9/80 - no reoccurrence - HRT 8/80; bladder cancer 11/97; reoccurrence: 4X
                              Son: I/O 11/04; embryonal, teratoma; VI; 3XBEP; relapse 5/08; RPLND 6/18/08 - path: mature teratoma

                              Comment

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