Testicular cancer most commonly affects men between the ages of 15 and 45 years old, and NHS Lincolnshire CCG is encouraging people to learn more about the symptoms of testicular cancer, as part of Testicular Cancer Awareness month in April.
The best way to make more people, men and women, aware of male cancer including testicular cancer, is by talking about it so that we are aware and know what signs and symptoms to look out for. As with all cancers, early diagnosis can often lead to less complicated treatment and saves lives.
Testicular cancer accounts for one percent of all new cancer cases in males in the UK with incident rates being highest in males aged 30 to 34, and projected to rise by 12% in the UK between 2014 and 2035, to ten cases per 100,000 males by 2035.
Occurring when normal, healthy cells, usually carefully regulated by the body, begin to reproduce uncontrollably within an area of the body, in this case the testicles, testicular cancer will be diagnosed in around 2,400 UK men every year, and is statistically the most common cancer in men aged 25-49 in the UK.
As with all forms of cancer, the sooner testicular cancer is diagnosed the higher the chance of survival. Ninety eight percent (98%) of men will be alive ten years after treatment, hence why men are encouraged to perform testicular self-examinations at least once every month.
Symptoms of testicular cancer include:
- In around 90% of cases a small pea sized lump can be found.
- An ache in the scrotum.
- A feeling of heaviness in the scrotum.
It is likely that if any lumps are found they will not cause you any harm – 96% of abnormalities found affecting the testicles will not be cancerous.
However, if you notice any changes you should contact your GP practice for a consultation, or for a confidential talk call the National Orchid Male Cancer Helpline on 0808 802 0010. This free service operates between Monday and Wednesday during the hours of 10am-5pm.
Testicular cancer is one of the most treatable cancers. It is very important to do self-examinations at least once a month. You should check for any lumps in the scrotum or anything that may seem a little bit different to normal.
If you think you may be experiencing symptoms of testicular cancer visit your GP practice for a check-up and to see if you need any further tests.
The main factors that can increase the chances of developing testicular cancer include undescended testicles, which is when the testicle does not descend into the scrotum, a family history of testicular cancer or if you have previously been diagnosed with the condition.
For more information and to find out what help is available, visit www.nhs.uk