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Testicular Cancer Treatment And Sexual Dysfunction

Testicular Cancer Treatment And Sexual Dysfunction image

Testicular Cancer Treatment And Sexual Dysfunction

Testicular malignancy is the most frequently reported cancer in young or middle-aged males. Certain risk factors that can aggravate the risk of developing testicular cancer are; undescended testis (also referred to as cryptorchidism), exposure to radiations and personal/ family history of testicular cancer. The most frequently reported type of testicular cancers are germ cell tumors, which includes:

With advanced diagnostic and therapeutic tools, most cases of testicular cancer are adequately managed and treated. However, it is imperative to mention that the therapy is associated with some adverse effects.

How To Treat Testicular Cancer?

According to latest estimates, 8,720 new cases of testicular malignancy will be diagnosed in the United States in 2016. Regardless of the increasing number of cases, the overall survival and quality of life is generally satisfactory in these patients. This is mainly attributed to the advanced treatment options that are available today.  The treatment modalities depends largely on the age, size of tumor, histological variety/ extent of cancer involvement, and patient preferences.

Common options are:

1. Surgery: For localized disease, doctors usually advice surgical intervention which involves orchiectomy (removal of one or both testicles). In some cases, removal of surrounding lymph nodes is also important.

2. Non-Surgical Treatments: For advanced disease, pharmacological regimen is generally preferred. This includes:

In some patients with advanced disease, more than one form of therapy can be employed to achieve desired results.

Sexual Dysfunction And Testicular Cancer Treatment

It has been observed that a significant percentage of patients develops moderate to severe sexual dysfunction with testicular cancer treatment.  According to a study reported in the British Journal of Urology (2), investigators reported the results of a study conducted on 79 men (mean age – 29 years) who underwent a variety of treatments for the management of testicular cancer.

After the completion of study, it was observed that:

Other common sexual disorders that are very frequently reported in males suffering from testicular cancer are:

What Causes Sexual Dysfunction In Males Undergoing Treatment?

There are several explanations; for example:

But it is possible to maintain satisfactory sexual life after testicular cancer management; here’s how:


1.  DeSantis, C. E., Lin, C. C., Mariotto, A. B., Siegel, R. L., Stein, K. D., Kramer, J. L., … & Jemal, A. (2014). Cancer treatment and survivorship statistics, 2014. CA: a cancer journal for clinicians, 64(4), 252-271.

2. Tal, R., Stember, D. S., Logmanieh, N., Narus, J., & Mulhall, J. P. (2014). Erectile dysfunction in men treated for testicular cancer. BJU international, 113(6), 907-910.

3. Tasdemir, C., Firdolas, F., Harputluoglu, H., Altintas, R., & Gunes, A. (2012). Erectile dysfunction in testicular cancer patients treated with chemotherapy. Andrologia, 44(4), 226-229.

4. Abu Zaid, M. I., Sesso, H. D., Fung, C., Feldman, D. R., Hamilton, R. J., Vaughn, D. J., … & Fossa, S. (2015, May). Chronic health conditions (CHCs) following cisplatin-based chemotherapy (CHEM): A multi-institutional study of 680 testicular cancer survivors (TCS). In ASCO Annual Meeting Proceedings (Vol. 33, No. 15_suppl, p. 9519).

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