• Testicular Cancer Awareness - Movember

    Being that it is the last day of Movember I thought I would take this opportunity to shed some light on a few things everyone should know about testicular cancer.

    So in 2015, I was diagnosed with stage 2 testicular cancer at the age of 29. It was a tough fight, but thanks to a great support group, awesome doctors, and a bit of luck I am still here today and currently cancer free. There are many things that I learned about testicular cancer that year. Some things I had heard of before, but most things I had no knowledge of before.

    First, testicular cancer is a young man's cancer. It is most common in men ages 18-35. I always thought that cancer wasn't something you really had to worry about until you were older, but testicular cancer is a different beast. At the same time that I was being treated, there was a 15 year boy that was being treated as well. So this means that it's really never too early to start checking your balls for tumors. For more info on how to do this you can check out the Movember website, but basically you are just looking for any abnormally hard lumps. Could be small or large, so if you find something that is questionable at all, there's no harm in checking with your doctor to be safe. Also sharp pain in your testes can be an early sign of testicular cancer.

    Second, you don't have to have a noticable tumor on your balls to have testicular cancer. I know that this is the part that is going to freak everyone out, but I have to tell this story because if I had known this, I may have caught my cancer in an earlier stage. I never had a noticable tumor or any discomfort in my testes. In fact, the thing that finally made me go to the doctor was I was having incredibly bad lower back pain. I know everyone has lower back pain, but this was a pain that wasn't a muscle, and it felt deeper inside my body. It eventually went from lower back pain to lower abdominal pain as well. Since the cancer had spread to my retro perotineal lymph nodes, the swollen nodes were pushing up against my spinal cord and wreaking all kinds of havoc. The pain started as something that was intermittent, often it was worse at the end of the day, and finally when it persisted for a week straight, I went to the doctor. So long story short, If you have any persistent abnormal pain in your back or abodomen, maybe go get it checked out!

    Third, when testicular cancer spreads beyond the lymph nodes, the next thing it hits is your lungs and then brain. I have no personal experience with having it spread to lungs or brain. But if you are having pain in your testes, your abdomen, your head, and you are developing a cough, then definitely get checked out!

    Anyway, there are many more things that I could write here, but the main thing with any health awareness is, be aware of your body. If something feels out of whack at all, don't be afraid to go to the doctor. It's probably nothing, but look at me. I thought I just had a sore back and stomach and two days after going to the doctor I was starting chemo and saying goodbye to my right nut!

    If anyone has any follow up questions about testicular cancer, I would be happy to answer any that I can. Stay healthy guys and I hope everyone had a wonderful Movember. I know I am looking forward to shaving off this ridiculous moustache on my face!

    Just a little photo of me shaving my head after I had started chemo. It was, and still is, the only time I have straight shaved my head. It was harder than I thought it would be!

    This article was originally published in forum thread: Testicular Cancer Awareness - Movember started by portlandrazorco View original post