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Testicular Cancer

Testicular cancer is cancer that starts in the testicles, the male reproductive glands located in the scrotum. It begins when normal cells in a testicle change and grow uncontrollably in a tumor. The tumor can be benign (noncancerous) or malignant (cancerous). With timely diagnosis, testicular cancer is highly treatable and usually curable. Medical advances have made the overall cure rate for testicular cancer about 95 percent.

This cancer is unusual because it strikes mostly young men and even children. Discovering a lump in the scrotum can be disturbing, but Indiana University Health has an excellent reputation for treating these cancers successfully. Men come from around the world to IU Health for treatment of testicular cancer.

There are two major types of testicular cancer. These cancers grow from germ cells, the cells that make sperm:

  • Seminomas. These usually occur in men between age 25 and 45 and tend to grow and spread more slowly than non-seminomas.
  • Nonseminomas. These types of tumors usually occur in men between their late teens and early 30s. They grow more quickly than seminomas, and they are more difficult to treat.

Men usually discover testicular cancer as a hard lump growing on a testicle. However, because testicular cancer is relatively rare, it is important to be evaluated by an experienced team with special expertise and knowledge of testicular tumors.

Symptoms of testicular cancer may include:

  • A lump in either testicle
  • A swollen testicle
  • Pain, swelling or hardness in the testicles
  • Heaviness in the scrotum
  • Dull ache in the lower abdomen or groin
  • Tenderness or swelling in the breast area

How We Can Help

How We Can Help

Testicular Cancer Treatment Information

IU Health offers a wide range of treatment options. Our multidisciplinary approach provides well-rounded and highly effective treatment. Our specialists collaborate to treat even advanced testicular cancer that has metastasized (spread) to other organs of the body. Your particular cancer and your preferences are an important part of our treatment decisions. We also provide social workers and counselors who can help you with emotional aspects of cancer.

Removing the affected testicle is usually an essential part of treatment. If we catch the cancer at an early stage, this may be the only treatment necessary. If we decide there is no need for further treatment, careful monitoring will help us catch any cancer that was not visible earlier.

If not caught early enough, testicular cancer can metastasize upward into lymph nodes in the abdomen. Further metastasis often appears in the lungs and requires more aggressive treatment.

Surgery, chemotherapy and radiation are essential treatment options for testicular cancer.

In treating testicular cancer we speak of cure rates, not just survival rates. Treatment has become so effective that it’s common for a man to have no recurrence and live a completely normal life.

Clinical Trials

Lifesaving treatments developed over the last 50 years have made testicular cancer one of the most survivable cancers. Researchers and physicians at IU Health are among those who developed innovative treatments for this cancer. We gained an international reputation for our work, and we remain on the leading edge of treatment for testicular cancer.

Testicular Cancer Locations & Physicians

Use the search options below to find treatments available in your area. 

Find a Specialist

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Testicular Cancer Support Services

Learning more about testicular cancer can help you understand your risks and enable you to work more effectively with your physician. Support resources, such as online forums and local meetings, can help you manage concerns about your condition. The links below provide many resources to help you.