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Should I get a CT-Scan to make sure?

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  • Should I get a CT-Scan to make sure?

    Hi everyone.

    About a year ago I started feeling pain in my left testicle. When I went to the walk-in clinic originally, they gave me antibiotics, but after the pain didn't go away I got an ultrasound. It came back clear: "no testicular masses." The pain in my testicle got weaker, but it never fully goes away. Some days it is worse than others. Tight clothing usually makes it worse, and so does biking. But since it never went away, I got nervous and went to do a second ultrasound this summer. It found a hydrocele on my right testicle (which is not the one hurting) and, again, "no masses."

    At the end August, I started having abdominal cramps and felt very bloated. My doctor diagnosed me with gastritis or peptic ulcer and gave me anti-acid medication for 30 days. The meds really helped my stomach pain, which went away completely for those 30 days, but I started having pain in my lower back. Around the same time, I went to get blood tests done and my AFP was less than 1 and my bHCG was less than 3. So that was good news.

    After the 30 days, however, my stomach pain came back and I am on another 30 days of medication. However, the meds don't seem to be helping my pain anymore. Additionally, I started having chest pain two weeks ago and I have no explanation for it. My lower back pain is also always there; changing positions helps initially but not for very long. It's not a strong pain, but it hasn't been getting better for 2 months either.

    So now I'm wondering: Is it worth doing a CT-Scan to make absolutely sure I don't have TC, given I have a lot of the symptoms. My doctor is hesitant because of the radiation.
    Or is there other tests I should be considering first, like a Chest X_Ray or an MRI or an Ultrasound of my abdominal area?

    Thanks for your help,
    I really don't know what to do at this point and my anxiety is getting worse and worse.

  • #2
    Did the scrotal ultrasound find any abnormalities? Micro calcifications?

    CT Scan is not without its own risks.

    From my limited exposure to TC survivors, the most common noticeable (although may not be common) symptom of stage II disease is ratcheting back pain due to retroperiteneal tumor pressing on nerves. My understanding is that this is typically in the mid back not lower back.

    Just for your info: There are other kinds of germ cell tumors as well: primary mediastinal and primary retroperitenal but these are rare. There is also the occurrence of tumor burnout in the testicle.

    If it were me Id be pressing the docs for answers to the unknown symptoms. It may not be related to TC but it would still be good to know root cause.

    Keep us updated.
    Last edited by mcintoda; 10-24-17, 04:49 AM.
    Age 31 - Portland, OR
    01NOV16- Pain in right testicle, palpable mass
    13NOV16- R I/O. Markers normal
    27NOV16- Stage Ia non-seminoma, 1.3cm, 100% EC, no LVI
    06DEC16 - CT scan clear
    09DEC16 - Started 1xBEP. Neutropenic at day 15; Worst part for me was bleo (allergic).
    03JAN17- Ended 1xBEP; start surveillance
    18MAR17-2nd pathology report shows 90% EC , 10% seminoma


    • #3
      While this may seem to you to be all related to the first symptom you noticed, actually, it does not seem related to me. Too many symptoms in too many place all of which are *much* more likely to be caused by something other than TC.Back pain is almost NEVER a symptom of TC. While many report having back pain when they were diagnosed, very few have TC advanced enough to be considered an actual cause of that pain. Back pain is so much a common human ailment that it is hard to find anyone who hasn't experienced it at some point.

      Jan, 1975: Right I/O, followed by RPLND
      Dec, 2009: Left I/O, followed by 3xBEP