Well, I likely have cancer [update: no, I don't]

The good news is that it’s one of the best kinds to have in terms of its treatability (testicular), and that we likely caught it early.

I discovered a lump under a testicle a while ago and figured it was nothing. But it didn’t go away in the time period I thought was logical, so I finally went to get it checked out. My wife also didn’t think it was anything, but encouraged me to get it checked out. My primary care doctor, upon examination, also didn’t think it was anything, but out of abundance of caution, sent me on for an ultrasound. I was able to get in for an ultrasound the same day (which was this past Thursday).

The first significant sign of a problem was the fact that my doctor’s office called me before I’d even managed to leave the parking lot of the ultrasound office. The ultrasound supervising doctor had called them immediately afterward to relay the results. They told me I needed to have an appointment with a urologist right away.

My appointment with the urologist was yesterday. The kind of amazing thing I learned first was that my doctor, my wife and I were all correct—the lump I’d found was nothing to be concerned about. But thanks to my doctor’s precaution, they’d found the dangerous mass in the other testicle. So, I’m amazingly lucky on that front.

The urologist pointed out that these types of cancers are usually fairly fast growing, and given the small size of the mass, we’d probably caught it very early. But for the same reason, he wants to deal with the situation quickly. So, I’m having surgery next week to remove the offending testicle and its accoutrements (“radical” or “inguinal” orchiectomy), and I get to be laid up for a bit recovering while the mass is tested. I’m also having a CT scan this week to see if anything has spread yet.

I admit to being scared, but again, IF in fact this is cancer (“highly likely” were the urologist’s words), it’s highly treatable. I’m told that even if it has spread, this variety responds extremely well both to radiation and chemotherapy, so my odds for a full recovery are really high either way, and I’d likely need just a small number of treatments.

So, that’s the story. Honestly, I feel a bit guilty saying “I may have cancer” when there are plenty of people who know they do and are having to deal with something that has a far worse prognosis than what I might be dealing with. But I share because it helps me a bit mentally to have it out there, and I know there are plenty of folks here who have gone through such a scare (or worse) who may have things of value to share, which I’d definitely appreciate.

With minor changes, this could have been me a bit over a year ago. Caught early, easily treatable and so forth. Also scared, a bit.

But know this. When they say they can deal with it. When they say with confidence there’s a good chance to fix this thing. They’re not lying. I had 2.5 weeks of chemo - spread over two different periods as well as radiation therapy - 33 treatments in all spread over a bit more than 6 weeks - and all that implies. But now I have had five clean scans in a row. One each quarter since I finished treatment August 2, 2017.

It gets better. They promised me they’d beat me up and I’d feel terrible but that it could be treated and I’d eventually feel better. And they told the truth. You’ll get through this. It takes a positive attitude and some recognition that you’re not as tough as you think. When you’re body says ‘rest’ you rest. If you don’t want to get up for an entire day because you’re tired, your ipad is right there and you just don’t want to? Do that. Lie in bed for the entire day. Because that’s what you need to do to get better.

Go through treatment. Feel lousy. Get better.

I’m with you…we’re all with you (I feel certain of that)…and you can do this thing. We’re a long way from the past and we’re living in a science fictional world. Let it do it’s thing and make you better.

Let me know what I can do to support you. You’re not alone.

Anyway, the Cubs are up vs the Dodgers this season, 4 games to 2. You can’t leave me with that, can you?

Be strong, homie!

It takes balls to deal with testicular cancer. Or even testicular “unknown mass.”

Good you got it checked out.

Sorry that you have a bit of marathon to get through, but best wishes and I’m looking forward to reading your posts for many more years to come. I’ve known a couple of men who have had testicular cancer and while the treatment was no fun at all, all of them are doing well now, years afterwards.

My condolences. Too many of us will at some point face one form or another of cancer. Glad that the prognosis is hopeful.

Wow, I’m glad for that coincidental early find!

Don’t feel guilty for posting because you may have cancer. Those are scary words to hear, and while it’s good to keep it in perspective, which you’re doing admirably well, anything that makes you feel guilty about doing what you need to do to wrap your head around the diagnosis is a waste.

I found a breast lump last January and knew immediately and instinctively it was bad news; even so, hearing “invasive ductal carcinoma” was a shock, and I fell apart. So even though you know the probability, keep in mind this may still hit you hard if the diagnosis is cancer. I found myself repeating, “I have cancer” dozens of times daily to just try to comprehend it. (Me? Me? Really?)

It sounds like if you have a malignancy, your prognosis is likely going to be very promising, but that doesn’t mean it’s not a huge adjustment or that you won’t hit little land mines of fear. Lots of great Doper shoulders around when needed!

Wishing you the best!

We’re all here for you. Feel free to vent and emote all you want. Other people may have worse cancers, but that’s irrelevant. This is your situation and your entitled feel scared and upset by it.

Yes. Buy yourself a lottery ticket. Finding it early is great. Good luck with the treatment.

Great that they found it, even by chance. I’ve had two accidental ‘finds’: two small aneurysms a small stroke. Amusing that the aneurysms were found when I went to the ER thinking I’d had a stroke (I hadn’t), and the stroke was found during an follow-on MRI to check on the aneurysms.

Best of luck as you go through this process. I hope everything goes even better than expected.

Oh, I understand those words (in my case) “infiltrating ductal carcinoma”, because I heard them myself. It will be a year on October 3rd, and long story made short: It’s unlikely to come back, and my life expectancy right now is about the same as if I had never been diagnosed. In my case, I didn’t find a lump in my breast; it was caught on a mammogram, and for a short time after I got the diagnosis, I thought, “If I hadn’t had the mammogram and the biopsy, I wouldn’t be going through this now” and then went " :smack: ! If I hadn’t done that, I’d be dealing with something much worse later on."

Asimovian, I am SOOOOOOO glad you had that test. Keep us posted. We’re here for you.

Yikes! Good luck, dude – thank god they caught it early and it’s treatable!!! Hang in there (no pun intended)

You have a perfect right to have fear. I truly sympathize with you. Good luck.

I believe that the official recommendation is now against screening (clinical or self examination for lumps) and that’s largely because treatment for testicular cancer is so effective, even in advanced cases. I won’t presume to try to find survival curves without knowing your exact diagnosis, but I think you can be confident that they are not just trying to make you feel better - the prognosis really is excellent.

I’m glad you caught it early. You know the cheering squad is here for you. If there’s anything we can do, please shout out.

Share what you like, when you like. {{{hugs}}}

This is what I was going to say, but ITD, of course, said it much more eloquently. That other people have worse situations doesn’t minimize yours. The very best of luck. I hope you sail through treatment.

Damn, Asimovian! Best thoughts for a full recovery.

I was diagnosed with testicular cancer in 1999. Had the orchiectomy, and they determined the cancer had likely not spread outside the testicle. I had CT scans every six months for two years, all were negative. No chemo, no radiation. I dodged the bullet, and I’m still here.

The surgery is no biggie, but recovery is uncomfortable for a couple of weeks. Don’t be a hero, take the pain meds they give you. Try not to cough or sneeze, that is the worst.

Welcome to the club, now you know why the average number of testicles among men is less than two. My package is now known as The One-Eyed Pirate and His First Mate.

Left or right; and did you discuss the statistics on that? One teste originates further rostrally, embryologically, and is therefore statistically more likely to not descend normally.

That was a lot better story than I feared when I clicked on the thread title. Wishing you the best!