Despite the immaculate construction, the human body is not above making mistakes. The reason for the development of cancerous cells, for example, is the genetic equivalent of something as innocent as a “typo.” Although exposure to carcinogens is a contributing factor, cancer is really caused by a single genetic mutation. The cancer-causing mutation can have a number of manifestations within the cellular mechanisms that inhibit or excite cell division. The original problem cell, because of this mutation, will then erratically divide and continue dividing until a tumor is visible. Testicular cancer is when this mutation occurs in the male gametic or reproductive cells that are inherent in the testes. All men should familiarize themselves with the warning signs of testicular cancer, to ensure proper preventive practices.
The most prominent testicular cancer sign is the presence of a lump or growth in the testicle. The lump itself will not be especially sensitive or painful, which is why testicular cancer can unfortunately develop into later stages before it is detected. Slight swelling or discomfort in the lower abdominal and scrotal areas can also accompany the growth. Other than these fairly subtle indications, almost all sufferers report no pain, discoloration, sensation, or any other physical problem whilst they are still in the early stages of the cancer. Concerning testicular cancer symptoms, there are virtually none provided that the cancer has not metastasized to other areas of the body. Given the elusive nature of this cancer and the potentially grave outcome, awareness and preventive measures are paramount. Regular examinations while showering, as well as examinations with the doctor, are all it takes to detect early.
Any direct causes of testicular cancer have yet to be discovered. In the widespread endeavor to find cures, however, several important correlations have been made. Men who have a testicle that doesn’t descend, or cryptochidism, compose ten percent of all men who develop testicular cancer. Men who went through puberty early are also at a higher risk. Exposure to radioactivity, heat, and the consumption of certain carcinogenic foods are also correlated to the onset of testicular cancer. If cancer is suspect, doctors will diagnose first and ask questions later. Upon the discovery of the unwanted growth in the testicle, cancer is usually the first conclusion as such growths seldom indicate other problems. Logically, it behooves the victim to treat any such lumps as cancer.
For most forms of cancer, cancer screening is an ideal and proactive step towards prevention. Unfortunately for testicular cancer victims, there is no official screening method to test for testicular cancer. Once it has already been detected, however, treatments for testicular cancer are of course readily available and highly effective. To confirm diagnoses, doctors will usually perform some kind of ultrasound on the testicles to test for the presence of a superfluous mass. If the test is positive, the next step is determining how far along the cancer is, and whether it has metastasized or not. X-rays of the chest cavity and other vital areas will indicate whether the cancer has spread to the lungs, heart, or brain. If the cancer is localized, the most common treatment option is an orchiectomy, or the surgical removing of the infected testicle. If the cancer is in a later stage and has spread, the orchiectomy may be accompanied with or replaced by clinical trials and chemotherapy.
Men would do well to arm themselves with as much knowledge as possible to avoid being victimized by testicular cancer. Avoiding carcinogenic food dyes and chemicals is crucial in outsmarting the cancer. As numerous and elusive as they can be, the best way to do this is by maintaining a low-toxin diet that is rich in actual food, the kind that doesn’t have much of a “shelf life.” Anything, including supposedly “diet” foods, that comes with a label should be under close scrutiny. Regular self-examinations are equally important in preventing testicular cancer. A simple 30 seconds to a minute of checking for any irregular developments in the testicles while showering is all that it takes. Routine visits to the doctor are the most important thing of all, as many cancer survivors attribute their success to early detection at the doctor’s office. With today’s technology, keen awareness, and a positive attitude, every victim has a fighting chance.
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