Testicular cancer

Affected by testicular cancer? Join this group to share experiences and ask questions to people who understand what you're going through.

TC Stages

Mike87
Posted by

Hi Everyone,

I hope your all well. 

So, I haven't posted for a little while so here’s a little about me;

I noticed my left testicle was slightly firm in December 2016 but not enlarged. Ignored it as I didn’t think much of it in all honesty. My mum was then diagnosed with terminal lung cancer a month later. I began to notice it appeared larger but thought it was normal for one to be larger. My mother’s health then began to decline rapidly and I neglected my own concerns to take care of her needs. She sadly lost her life on 10th August 2017. 

After her passing I disclosed my concerns with my family who pushed me into getting checked at the GP of which following an ultrasound I was booked in for emergency surgery a few days later. Later diagnosed with Seminoma Stage 1 testicular cancer in September 2017 42mm tumour but had not broken the capsule layer.

1st yearly scan of abdo and pelvis in Sept 2018 with no symptoms of relapse. Bloods taken every 3 months and all normal (although my bloods were normal when I had the cancer) 

Shortly after my 1st year scan I felt an awareness in my mid back area to the left side. Informed doctors who said nothing to worry about. Continued taking bloods all normal with this awareness still present. I have my second year scan next month of my abdo region. 

My only concern is what if the cancer has spread to the lung and not the abdo area first? The bloods are showing a false negative as they have always shown and the CT scan only checks my abdo. 

Anyone have similar experiences or some thoughts ?

either way I hope everyone is doing well and keeping up the good fight!

Mike 

Odbball
Posted by

Hi mike,

When testicular “spreads” it remains testicular cancer.  I had mets on my lungs when i relapsed, it’s still TC, not long cancer, still exceedingly treatable.  

I also developed a throbbing pain in my back, it would keep me awake at night, it was more than “an awareness” of back pain.  

Im sorry about your mum, losing a parent is tough whenever it how it happens.

Youre 2 years clear, the odds of not relapsing are in your favour.  Good luck at your next check up.

take care 

dan

Odbball
Posted by

Hi mike,

just realised I misinterpreted your original post, TC spreads through the lymph node system, if it’s reached your lungs, it has to go through the abdominal lymph nodes first. They won’t miss it.

take care

dan

Mike87
Posted by

Hi Dan,

Thanks for the advice. Are you now in remission?

in terms of staging the content online is a little confusing. Even though cancer that has spread beyond the lymph nodes in the stomach would be classed as more advanced it appears that it can spread to the lungs first via blood or lymph nodes and completely skip the stomach?

Any thoughts would be interesting.

thanks

mike 

Spirited
Posted by

Hi Mike,

So sorry to hear all that you have been through. 

What you have described happened to my husband. However, this is very rare ( about 20% of cases according to our oncologist). My husband had a CT scan last December following suspected TC as he had a painful lump which the ultrasound and bloods suggested were TC. He had two tumours ( one seminoma and one non- seminoma). It had not spread to the spermatic chord but there was vascular invasion. 

The CT scan was clear but the urologist mentioned a couple of “ innocuous nodules” on his chest area that were less than 1 cm.  He said everyone had these and they were nothing to worry about. 

We then met the oncologist who recommended chemo due to  the fact that there was vascular invasion (and perhaps given the nature of the tumour eg, non- seminoma). He said the chemo would be one cycle ( purely preventative) or three cycles ( curative) in case the TC had travelled through the bloodstream. They would know whether it had depending on the results of my husband’s blood tests. The blood tests were done and came back clear. However, a chest x Ray taken to check for lung capacity showed that an “ innocuous nodule” on the chest had grown. Therefore, they took the view that spread via the blood had indeed occurred and longer chemo would be necessary. 

A further CT scan of chest/ abdo and pelvis was done and ( save the lung nodule) came back clear. My husband had four cycles of EP ( instead of three cycles of BEP.Our choice given his age (45) and risk of lung damage with bleomycin over if over 40) and is now in remission.

What happened to my husband was extremely rare and his initial scan showed nodules. Also his TC type was the more aggressive type and he had vascular invasion. So his case was very different to yours. 

Do you have any reason to suspect spread via the blood? Or is it just the awful general anxiety and worry of “ now cancer has entered my world, all that is bad is possible” that this dreadful disease can bring? 

If I were you, I would explain your worries to your oncologist/ key worker nurse as they will be able to reassure you. It is highly highly unlikely that this has happened to you, especially given your diagnosis but I appreciate you just want that peace of mind. 

When we went for the post chemo scan results in June, although regular chest scans had been ordered we pushed for a CT Scan sooner than the 5 year mark on the surveillance chart so that we could have peace of mind. 

I sincerely hope this worry is not stealing your peace of mind and joy. This disease is so horrible but try your best not to let it win! Keep busy and here for any other questions! 

Odbball
Posted by

Hi mike,

As Spirited states, rare to miss out the abdominal lymph nodes, but raise your concerns with the doctors.  I had/have regular chest x-rays, so suspect you will get the same.  I’m confident they will not miss anything that is there to be found, it’s why we have surveillance.

Am I in remission - it’s a word my oncologist says he never uses.  I currently have no evidence of disease, and require no further treatment at this time.  I’m now just over 8 mths post chemo and my surveillance has not flagged anything.  The significant milestone is getting to a year, after which the chances of it returning are massively reduced.  

Take care

dan