Testicular Self Exam


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It is important for men to become familiar with their testicles by examining them monthly. Testicular Self Examination (TSE) can help men detect tumors inside the testicles and sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). Self-examination often recommended by doctors because you don’t need any special equipment and can increase your chances of surviving testicular cancer by early diagnosis.

For those men with a history of undescended testicles at birth or men who are infertile are at greater risk of testicular cancer. It is recommended to regularly examine their testicles for unusual lumps or swellings every 4 weeks.

Testicle Anatomy
The Testicles hang outside the body in the scrotum because healthy sperm production needs to be at a temperature of  4°C lower than the body temperature.
 
Testicle – oval-shaped sex gland that produces sperm and sex hormones
Epididymis – tubular structure that attaches to the back of the testicles for storing sperm. You may feel it during examination.
Scrotum – the skin sack that protects the testicles
 
How To Do It
  1. Take a warm bath or shower. Make sure the scrotal skin is fully relaxed
  2. Roll each testicle between your thumbs and fingers of both hands
  3. Check for any irregularities by massaging the surface  of the testicles very gently. Inspect for anything unusual while massaging
  4. Be aware that:
    - If you detect any swelling or tenderness, it might be an infection. Should bring this attention to your doctor.
    - If you found any bumps or hard lumps, schedule an appointment with your doctor for immediately testing.
  5. Make notes to yourself, for any changes during monthly examination. For example, change in testicular size, shape, or any inconsistency or feel of the testicles

Common Testicular Problems

Undescended testicles Can be either one or both testicles not descended down and hide inside the lower abdomen. When examined, the testicle is missing from the scrotum. Happen frequently for premature and low-weight baby boys. Statistics shown that this condition increase the risk for testicular cancer in the future
Epidiymo Infection (Orchitis) Infection of the epididymis or testicles causing inflammation and pain
Cyst Harmless collection of fluid
Haematocele Blood clot caused by trauma or injury to the testicles or scrotum
Varicocele Varicose veins of the scrotum
Testicular Torsion Extremely painful condition when testicular cord twists and cuts off the blood supply. Needs urgent medical attention, otherwise the testicle will die

It is recommended to do the examination in front of the mirror, so you can see as well as feel at different angles. Testicular Self Exam should not be uncomfortable or painful, if so you might be pressing too hard.

There are many potent herbs that are beneficial for the wellbeing of the testicular structure and function. For example, Chinese herbs Suo Yang (Cynomorium Songaricum) ,Bu Gu Zhi (Psoralea Corylifolia), and Achyranthes Root (Niu Xi) provide the building block nutrients necessary for testicular trauma recovery and prevent for testicular dysfunctions. [1] [2] [3] [4] [5]


Reference: 
  1. ^Abdel-Magied EM, Abdel-Rahman HA, Harraz FM., The effect of aqueous extracts of Cynomorium coccineum and Withania somnifera on testicular development in immature Wistar rats., J Ethnopharmacol. 2001 Apr;75(1):1-4.
  2. ^Wei SM, Yan ZZ, Zhou J., Psoralea corylifolia protects against testicular torsion/detorsion-induced ischemia/reperfusion injury, J Ethnopharmacol. 2011 Sep 1;137(1):568-74. Epub 2011 Jun 16.
  3. ^Yang WM, Kim HY, Park SY, Kim HM, Chang MS, Park SK., Cynomorium songaricum induces spermatogenesis with glial cell-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) enhancement in rat testes., J Ethnopharmacol. 2010 Apr 21;128(3):693-6. Epub 2010 Feb 26.
  4. ^Sandhyakumary K, Boby RG, Indira M., Impact of feeding ethanolic extracts of Achyranthes aspera Linn. on reproductive functions in male rats., Indian J Exp Biol. 2002 Nov;40(11):1307-9.,
  5. ^Anuja MN, Nithya RN, Rajamanickam C, Madambath I., Spermatotoxicity of a protein isolated from the root of Achyranthes aspera: a comparative study with gossypol., Contraception. 2010 Oct;82(4):385-90. Epub 2010 Jun 17.


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Sglodny's picture
Sglodny posted on Wed, 10/17/2012 - 12:19
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What a great article. It is very important to do self checks because a couple of years back I had a testicular cancer scare. Ever since then I have been doing constant checks on my testicles to make sure they are full and healthy. Make sure you always check it because you never know what you will be able to find down there.
mxffiles's picture
mxffiles posted on Thu, 12/15/2016 - 00:24
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