Question

Testicular Cancer

How often should men be checked for testicular cancer?

A Answers (2)

  • AMehmet Oz, MD, Cardiology, answered

    Dr. Mehmet Oz, Vice-Chair and Professor of Surgery at Columbia University,  says testicular cancer is the number-one cancer for young men ages 15 to 35. "That's why it's so tragic, because you've got these young, virile, vital guys, and they end up with a cancer that, by the time they do something about it, it's often the size of a softball. That puts you way behind the eight ball trying to catch up and treat the person. Often it's spread to the other testicle, which means they become sterile," he says. "You've got to know how to examine yourself."

    Every man should start self-exams at age 15, Dr. Oz says. "You can do it whenever you take a bath. You're feeling for subtle differences … You're feeling for nodules. You're feeling for enlargement of the testicle. You're looking for sort of a full feeling down there. Sometimes you get fluid," he says. "And what a lot of folks don't think about, which is important, is you actually get sensitivity of the breasts because testicular cancers are often endocrine cancers. They send out chemicals that can change the way you look. Pay attention to those subtleties, and you can save your or someone else's life."

  • AMark Litwin, MD, Urology, answered on behalf of UCLA Health
    You should check yourself for testicular cancer once a month. Pick the first day of the month, last day of the month or something else that can help you to remember to check yourself once a month. Do it at the same time every month so that you become familiar with the nooks and crannies of your own body and will be able to tell if something is amiss.
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