|    Bookmark This Site    
Header Main

About Testicular Cancer: Anatomy of the Testicle
Home > About Testicular Cancer > Anatomy & Function of the Testicle

Anatomy & Function of the Testicle

Testicle AnatomyThe testicles (also called testes or gonads) are the male sex glands. They are located behind the penis in a pouch of skin called the scrotum. The testicles produce sperm and testosterone. The testicles are located outside the body because sperm develop best at a temperature several degrees cooler than normal internal body temperature.

The germ cells inside the seminiferous tubules (sertoli cells) create sperm. The sperm move into the epididymis where they mature. They are stored there for a few weeks until they eventually move up the vas deferens to combine with fluids from the prostate and seminal vesicles to form what you normally think of as semen. The whole process takes about 7 weeks.

The leydig cells distributed throughout the testicle are the body's main source of testosterone. Testosterone, the male sex hormone, is essential to the development of the reproductive organs and other male characteristics such as body and facial hair, low voice, and wide shoulders. Without enough testosterone, a man will probably lose his sex drive and suffer from fatigue, depression, hot flashes and osteoporosis.

Note that when we talk about testicular cancer, we are normally talking about cancer of the germ cells. It is possible to have cancer of the leydig or sertoli cells, but these tumors are not as common and are usually not malignant. Also, since testicular cancer is associated with the germ cells, lumps or masses in the scrotum or on the epididymis, but not on the testicle, cannot be testicular cancer.

For more detailed information please visit the TCRC.



Back to top

View our Testicular Cancer Online Forum
Testicular Cancer Research & Advancements in treatment
Make A Donation to TC-Cancer.com
TC-Cancer.com and the Testicular Cancer Information and Support Forums, the world's largest testicular cancer forums, were started over a decade ago by a testicular cancer survivor and his friend. TC-Cancer.com and the forums are now supported as a program of the Testicular Cancer Society in concert with the critical support of the voluntary moderators. The Testicular Cancer Society is dedicated to making sure the site and forums are a permanent resource for future patients, survivors and caregivers.

If you would like to make a contribution, then please use the button below and your donation to the Testicular Cancer Society will be marked as being for support of TC-Cancer.com and the forums.
The Testicular Cancer Society is 501(c)(3) public charity, non-profit organization. Your contributions are tax deductible under section 170 of the IRS Code.
Other Resources
Testicular Cancer Society
Personal Stories
Scott's Story
At bedtime one night in March 2003, I suddenly noticed that my right testicle was more than double normal size...
more ยป