Informative Information for Testicular Cancer

Alpha-fetoprotein - This test measures the levels of a protein called alpha-fetoprotein  (AFP) in the blood or amniotic fluid. Amniotic fluid is the substance  that surrounds a baby in the womb. Both unborn and young children produce this protein.

Anemia -  Anemia is a condition in which red blood cells or the hemoglobin (a  protein) in red blood cells is abnormally low.

Benign Tumor - any abnormal growth that does not represent cancer cells.

Biopsy - A biopsy is the removal of a tissue sample from the body. The  sample is then examined under a microscope. Biopsies are used to  diagnose many medical conditions, from skin problems to cancer.

Bleomycin - BLEOMYCIN (Blenoxane®) is  a type of chemotherapy for treating cancer. Bleomycin is an antibiotic  that interferes with the cycle of cell growth. It is effective in  containing many types of cancer, including testicular cancer.

Blood Count -  A CBC, also called a complete blood count, is a screening test used to  diagnose and manage many diseases. A CBC measures the status of  important features of the blood, including the: number of red blood  cells (RBCs) number of white blood cells (WBCs) number of platelets  total amount of hemoglobin in the blood percentage of blood composed of  cells, or hematocrit mean corpuscular hemoglobin (MCH) mean corpuscular  hemoglobin concentration (MCHC) mean corpuscular volume (MCV).

Catheter -  An intravenous line, or IV, that is inserted into a vein to deliver medication, fluids, or nutrition. It can also be used to remove blood  for sampling.

Chemotherapy - Chemotherapy refers to medications that can kill or control cancer.  These medications are delivered to all parts of the body in the  bloodstream. For this reason, chemotherapy is considered a systemic  treatment, or one that affects the entire body. (2)chemotherapy. This  treatment is given to men with nonseminomas or seminomas that are large  or have spread. Chemotherapy is often used when other treatments have  not been effective. Cisplatin, bleomycin, and etoposide are the  medications most commonly used.

Chest X-ray - Chest x-rays detect abnormalities of the lungs, heart, great blood  vessels, chest wall, ribs, diaphragm and thoracic spine. The healthcare  provider will discuss abnormal results with the individual.

Cisplatin -  Cisplatin is considered to be the platinum agent of choice in  combination chemotherapy for head and neck and testicular cancers.

Epididymitis - a medical condition characterized by discomfort or pain in of the epididymis, a curved structure at the back of the testicle in which sperm matures and is stored. Epididymitis is usually characterized as either acute or chronic: if acute, the onset of testicular pain is often accompanied by inflammation, redness, and warmth in the scrotum; if chronic, pain may be the only symptom. In either form, testicular pain in one or both testes can vary from mild to severe, and one or both epididymides may noticeably swell and/or harden.

Etoposide - ETOPOSIDE, VP-16 (VePesid®) is a type of chemotherapy for treating cancer. Etoposide interferes  with the growth of cells. Etoposide is effective in treating cancer of  the lung and testicles.

Hemoglobin - The iron-protein component in the red blood cells that carries oxygen  to the tissues.

Human Chorionic  Gonadotropin (hCG) - is a gonad-stimulating polypeptide hormone normally secreted by the placenta during pregnancy.

 Immune System  The body's system of defenses against disease, composed of certain white blood cells and antibodies. Antibodies are protein substances  that react against bacteria and other harmful material.

Lymph -  A nearly colorless fluid that bathes body cells and moves through the  lymphatic vessel of the body.

Lymph nodes - Bean-shaped structures scattered along vessels of the lymphatic system. These nodes act as filters, collecting bacteria or cancer cells  that may travel through the lymphatic system.

Lymphatic system - Circulatory network of vessels carrying lymph, and the lymphoid  organs such as the lymph nodes, spleen, and thymus, that produce and  store infection-fighting cells.

Malignant -  Tending to become progressively worse; in the case of cancer, it implies ability to invade, spread, and actively destroy normal tissue.

Metastasize - Cancer growths that started from cancer cells shed by a primary cancer arising in another part of the body.

Nonseminoma - Testicular cancers made up of specialized cells.

Oncologist - A physician who specializes in cancer.

Oncology -  Study of the physical, chemical, and biological properties and features of cancer.

Orchiectomy - Surgical removal of one or both testes.

Pathologist - A physician who interprets and diagnoses the changes cause by disease in the body.

Prognosis - An estimate of the outcome of a disease; a prediction.

Protocol - A general treatment plan that several hospitals use for one type of cancer.

Retroperitoneal  Lymph Node Dissection (RPLND) - type of surgery in which potentially cancerous lymph nodes are  removed from the area behind the abdomen, known as the retroperitoneum.

Seminoma - primitive cells resembling the primordial germ cell.

Teratoma - germ cell tumors that when seen under the microscope, look like each of the three layers of a developing embryo: endoderm (inner layer), mesoderm (middle layer) and ectoderm (outer layer). 

Testis  (Testicle) gonads - Male reproductive organs located in the scrotum that produce sperm and the male hormone, testosterone.

Testosterone - Testosterone is a steroid hormone that is secreted from the Leydig cells of the testes in males and from the adrenal cortex and ovaries in females. Testosterone is necessary for the development and maintenance  of secondary sex characteristics in the male.

Tumor -  A spontaneous new growth of tissue forming an abnormal mass. A neoplasm, or tumor, serves no useful function growing at the expense of  the healthy organism.

Tumor marker -  Tumor markers are chemical substances that are produced by some cancers. Most of these substances can be found in the bloodstream in small amounts even when cancer is not present. When cancers produce  these substances, they are usually produced in very large amounts. The amount of the substances may increase far above a normal level as the  disease worsens.

Ultrasound -  A test to examine a number of organs in the body. The ultrasound machine uses high-frequency sound waves to echo off the body and create a picture.

Urologist - A physician/surgeon specializing in the urinary tract and male reproductive tract.

X-Rays -  High-energy radiation used in high doses to treat cancer or in low doses to diagnoses disease.