To his credit, Raphael Baptiste, the leading male character in my latest novel, If I Were Your Woman, didn’t try to self-diagnose his symptoms. Instead, he immediately made an appointment with his physician and went through a battery of tests, which ultimately lead to his diagnosis.
How is testicular cancer diagnosed?
If testicular cancer is suspected, a health care provider will evaluate a man’s general health, which includes a physical exam as well as laboratory and other diagnostic tests. These tests include:
•Blood Test – this test measures the levels of tumor markers. Tumor markers are found in higher-than-normal amounts when cancer is present. The most commonly found markers suggesting the presence of a testicular tumor are alpha fetoprotein (AFP) and lactate dehydrogenase (LDH)
•Ultrasound – this test is 100% accurate in differentiating testicular cancer from other possible diagnosis. A testicular ultrasound determines the density, size and shape of a testicular mass. In most cases, when a solid testicular mass is discovered, it is a sign of a tumor since most testicular conditions involve fluid build-up.
•Biopsy – this test is the microscopic examination to determine if cancer is present. If the biopsy is positive an orchiectomy is performed, which is the surgical procedure to remove the affected testicle.
If testicular cancer is confirmed, more tests will be needed to determine if the cancer has spread from the testicles to other parts of the part so an appropriate treatment plan can be implemented.
Reference links to explore: