Testicular Cancer

Overview

Testicular cancer is the leading cause of cancer for men in their 20s and 30s, but when detected early, this is a highly treatment type of cancer. At City of Hope, our team of world-renowned specialists use leading-edge techniques to treat and cure this disease.
 
If you've been diagnosed with testicular cancer and you have questions about your next move, talk to us. Our renowned team can walk you through the process, address your concerns and create a personalized treatment plan designed to return you to a healthy, active life.

Request a Consultation

If you have been diagnosed with testicular cancer or are looking for a second opinion consultation about your treatment, request an appointment online or contact us at 800-826-HOPE. Please visit Making Your First Appointment for more information.

 

 

City of Hope brings together treatment and research expertise from multiple disciplines with an unmatched reputation for coordinated, compassionate care. Our urological cancer team has pioneered state-of-the-art regimens and procedures that eradicate cancer while minimizing side effects.

Highlights of our testicular cancer program include:

  • State-of-the-art diagnostic tools
  • Minimally invasive robotic-assisted surgery using the da Vinci Surgical System  
  • Radiation therapy, including TomoTherapy, brachytherapy
  • Pioneering drug research and clinical trials
  • Novel chemotherapy regimens
  • Active Surveillance
  • Fertility preserving therapies
  • Long-term family and survivorship supportive care programs
  • Designated a Comprehensive Cancer Center by the National Cancer Institute
  • Named by U.S. News & World Report as one of America's top urology and cancer hospitals

NEWS & BREAKTHROUGHS

What is testicular cancer?

Cancer starts when cells start to multiply and grow out of control. Testicular cancer forms in the testicles, which produce sperm and the hormone testosterone.
 
Testicular cancer is highly curable, with survival rates well over 90 percent, especially if detected and treated early. Although it is a rare cancer, this disease is still the leading cause of cancer in young men in their 20s and 30s.

Testicular cancer risk factors

There are several factors that may increase your risk of developing testicular cancer:
  • Undescended testicle. One of the main risk factors for testicular cancer is having an undescended testicle.
  • Age. Approximately half of testicular cancer cases are found in men in their 20s and 30s.
  • Race and ethnicity. White men have a higher risk for testicular cancer.
  • Cancer in the other testicle. Men who have had testicular cancer in one testicle are at higher risk for getting it in the other one.
  • Family history. Having a father or brother with testicular cancer increases the risk that you will get it as well.
  • HIV infection. Men infected with HIV may have a higher risk for developing testicular cancer.

Testicular cancer signs and symptoms

Possible testicular cancer warning signs may include:
  • An uncomfortable, but not necessarily painful lump on your testicle
  • Swelling or enlargement of a testicle
  • Heaviness or aching in the scrotum or abdomen
  • Tenderness or swelling in the breasts
  • Lower back pain

How is testicular cancer detected?

Most times, a lump in the testicle is the first symptom of testicular cancer.  lump may be detected during a physical exam or self-exam. Swelling is another common symptom. Most instances of testicular cancer can be found during the early stages, leading to effective treatment of the disease.
 

How we diagnose testicular cancer

An accurate diagnosis is crucial for implementing the best treatment plan. At City of Hope, doctors have a variety of methods to diagnose testicular cancer. Some of these tests include:
 
Ultrasounds
 
Performing an ultrasound on the testicles is often a first step in diagnosing testicular cancer. This test uses sound waves to create images of the testicles and detect any tumors.
 
Blood tests
 
Blood tests to identify tumor markers may be used to diagnose testicular cancer. Tumor markers are proteins or other substances in the blood that may be altered when cancer is present. For testicular cancer, the main markers are alpha-fetoprotein and human chorionic gonadotropin.
 
Biopsies
 
Doctors may perform a biopsy to remove a small sample of tissue from a tumor to test it for cancer. Many times, however, a surgeon will remove the entire tumor during a radical inguinal orchiectomy. 
 
Every patient is different, with different needs. At City of Hope, we design a testicular cancer treatment plan just for you. Our entire team works together to bring you precise, state-of-the-art surgery, radiation and chemotherapy options that will deliver the best outcome possible. We support you every step of the way, both during treatment and long after, helping you and your loved ones manage your recovery.
 
Treatment options include:

Surgery

When possible, our highly-skilled City of Hope surgeons use the latest minimally invasive and robotically assisted techniques. The two main surgical options for treating testicular cancer are:
 
Radical inguinal orchiectomy: This procedure removes one or both of the testicles affected by cancer through the inguinal canal.
 
Retroperitoneal lymph node dissection: If the cancer has spread to the abdominal lymph nodes, this surgery removes them through a large abdominal incision.

Radiation therapy

Radiation therapy uses powerful X-rays, gamma rays or charged particles to destroy cancer cells and shrink tumors. Radiation may be performed after surgery to ensure any remaining cancer cells are destroyed, or it may be used to kill cancer that has spread to other parts of the body.

Drug therapy

Chemotherapy is the use of anti-cancer drugs to kill all rapidly dividing cells, including cancer cells. Not every testicular cancer patient requires chemotherapy, but it can be an important part of an effective treatment regime in many cases.
 
City of Hope has a wide portfolio of cancer-fighting drugs available, allowing our medical oncologists to plan and prescribe a drug regimen that can best fight testicular cancer while minimizing side effects.
 

City of Hope’s renowned physicians and researchers utilize the latest in technology and innovation to treat testicular cancer, coupled with our enduring belief in providing unparalleled compassionate care.

Urologic Oncologists

Clayton S. Lau, M.D.

Clinical Specialties

  • Urologic Oncology
  • Urology
Kevin G. Chan, M.D.

Clinical Specialties

  • Urologic Oncology
  • Urology
Laura Crocitto, M.D., M.H.A.

Clinical Specialties

  • Urologic Oncology
  • Urology
Jonathan Lim Yamzon, M.D.

Clinical Specialties

  • Urologic Oncology
  • Urology
Bertram Yuh, M.D., M.S.H.C.P.M., M.I.S.M.

Clinical Specialties

  • Urologic Oncology
  • Urology
Ali Zhumkhawala, M.D.

Clinical Specialties

  • Urologic Oncology
  • Urology

Medical Oncologists

Sumanta Kumar Pal, M.D.

Clinical Specialties

  • Medical Oncology
Cy Aaron Stein, M.D., Ph.D.

Clinical Specialties

  • Medical Oncology
Przemyslaw W. Twardowski, M.D.

Clinical Specialties

  • Medical Oncology

Radiation Oncologist

Savita Dandapani, M.D., Ph.D.

Clinical Specialties

  • Radiation Oncology
Sagus Sampath, M.D.

Clinical Specialties

  • Radiation Oncology
Jeffrey Y.C. Wong, M.D.

Clinical Specialties

  • Radiation Oncology
City of Hope is a recognized leader in testicular cancer research. We are constantly developing new therapies to eradicate your cancer and help you return to an active, healthy life.

We conduct a wide variety of clinical trials, many of them not available to the general public.

Our latest research covers new state-of-the-art robotic surgical techniques, new radiation approaches and innovative chemotherapy and other options.
 
Browse through our clinical trials and research projects.
 

Living with Testicular Cancer

When you come to City of Hope, you automatically gain access to an unparalleled array of support services to help you and your family take each step in your testicular cancer journey. We can help with all of these concerns, and more:

  • Managing chemotherapy and other treatment side effects
  • Pain management
  • Navigating the health care system
  • Your emotional, social and spiritual health
  • Staying healthy and active
  • Healthy cooking and eating
  • Healing arts
  • Caregiver skills
  • Dealing with family, school or work stress

Explore additional resources at our Living with Cancer or Supportive Care Medicine sites.

 

Daniel Samson Success Story Image
Daniel Samson: Two-time Testicular Cancer Survivor

Daniel Samson's cancer journey began in a rather typical manner. But it didn't stay that way.