Signs & Symptoms

Signs & symptoms

Men themselves, not doctors, find most testicular cancers as a painless lump or an enlargement or hardening of the testicle, this is why regular self-exams are so important. If you do notice any lumps or changes it is important to see a doctor immediately. Many men with testicular cancer do not feel ill and many times there is no pain involved.

  • Other Signs of Testicular Cancer

    • Any enlargement of a testicle
    • A significant loss of size in one of the testicles
    • A feeling of heaviness in the scrotum
    • A dull ache in the lower abdomen, back or in the groin
    • A sudden collection of fluid in the scrotum
    • Pain or discomfort in a testicle or in the scrotum
    • Enlargement or tenderness of the breasts
  • Symptoms of advanced testicular cancer

    Even if testicular cancer has spread to other parts of the body, many men might not have symptoms right away. But some men might have some of the following:

    • Low back pain, from cancer spread to the lymph nodes (bean-sized collections of immune cells) in back of the belly.
    • Shortness of breath, chest pain, or a cough (even coughing up blood) may develop from cancer spread in the lungs.
    • Belly pain, either from enlarged lymph nodes or because the cancer has spread to the liver.
    • Headaches or confusion, from cancer spread in the brain.

Early detection

Monthly self-testicular exams are important to notice changes in one’s testicles. Most testicular cancers are found by men themselves or their partner, very few are found by a physician. Self-testicular exams allow you to become familiar with your testicles thus making it easier to notice any changes. If you do notice any changes then see a doctor immediately.

Most testicular cancers can be found at an early stage, when they're small and haven't spread. In some men, early testicular cancers cause symptoms that lead them to seek medical attention. Most of the time a lump on the testicle is the first symptom, or the testicle might be swollen or larger than normal.

Learn how to do a testicular self-exam.