Testicular cancer affects men under 44 years of age; it is in fact the most diagnosed neoplasm among men between 15 and 34 years of age. The most common sign is an indolent nodule discovered through self-palpation, but there may also be other symptoms that should not be underestimated, as suggested by Dr. Giovanni Lughezzani, urologist at Humanitas.
Weighing or pressure at the scrotum
The testis may vary in size and density, due to a reduction in testosterone or an increase in estrogen levels in the body, which may result in a change in testicle size or consistency.
Swelling in the legs
If the tumor spreads to the retroperitoneal lymph nodes, there may be a reduction in venous blood flow with the formation of clots and a venous thrombosis. Clots usually form in the lower limb vessels and can cause swelling of the legs. Sometimes, moving these clots to the lungs can cause respiratory difficulties.
Low back pain and shortness of breath
These symptoms are more characteristic of advanced testicular cancer.
Breast tension or growth of breast tissue
In more rare cases, some hormonal changes may be responsible for the onset of breast tension or growth of breast tissue. Specifically, several cancers can secrete high levels of human-coronary gonadotropin (HCG), a hormone that stimulates breast development.
When should I contact my doctor?
In the presence of even one of these symptoms it is advisable to consult your doctor. If you are not suffering from a bacterial infection (such as orchitis or orchipididymitis) and the symptoms do not resolve after antibiotic therapy, you should have an ultrasound scan to rule out the presence of testicular cancer. This neoplasm has a rapid growth and it is therefore essential that the diagnosis be early, in order to better treat the tumor and be more effective.