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  • Partial/full

    I'm scheduled to have a full orchiectomy next week. I asked this of the doctors but also wanted to pose this here to see if anyone has experienced what I was wondering about. During the surgery, is it typical to remove part of the testicle to biopsy the tumor? My lump/mass is pretty small (2x6 mm on the ultrasound): do they just remove that part and run the pathology? If they determine it's benign, do they not remove the testicle? I've read about partial orchiectomies for those who have a non-germ cell cancer or a benign mass. Obviously I'm hoping for benign.

    Basically I'm just wondering if there's any chance of saving part of my right nut, especially since the thing is so small?

  • #2
    Partial removal isnt usually done here in the U.S. not saying it isnt done just saying if you have a tumor then the whole thing comes out. They dont just remove the testicule. They also remove as much of the spermatic cord as they can. That way if it's a small tumor the reason is you could have micro cancer cells within the testicule itself.
    So they remove it all better safe than sorry, plus your remaining boy should be able to pick up the work load.
    Jan 2012- U/S mass in Left testicle
    Feb 2012- I/O performed to remove cancer
    Mar 1,2012- pathology pure seminoma
    Mar 7, 2012 PET SCAN stage IIa
    April 2012 Mayo clinic carbolite.
    May 2012 carbolite failed, started BEP x3
    August 7th 2012- BEP complete
    April 2013 CT/PET show relapse
    May 2013 RPLND
    Aug 2013 Relapse again Started VIeP x2
    Dec 2013 HDC completed CT/PETSCAN 1.1 cm x .8 cm right lower lung lobe
    Feb 2014 confirmed false positive all clear FINALLY !
    Jan 2015 1 year cancer free Pet/CT scan
    Jan 2016 2 years cancer free "Pet/CT scan
    Jan 2017 3 years cancer free "Pet/CT scan
    Jab 2018 4 years cancer free "Pet/CT scan, labs, xrays


    • #3
      My understand is that in 99% it is testicular cancer hence the full I/O, and they would always run it through to see what it is, and if it is cancer, what type (seminoma/non-seminoma and on) it is, and if its cancer, even though it's small, they will in all likelihood send you for CT scans to make sure it has not spread beyond the testicle!
      July 2016 - Left I/O
      December 2016 - BEPx3
      3 years all clear + baby after TC!

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      • #4
        I believe it is far more common to biopsy & do a "frozen section" when you are dealing with TC #2, in the hopes that it can be saved, however, it seems it rarely works out that it is not cancer. Partial I/Os are not recommended since the risk of a recurrence is so high.
        Jan, 1975: Right I/O, followed by RPLND
        Dec, 2009: Left I/O, followed by 3xBEP


        • #5
          Partial orchiectomies for small lesions are possible but rather a bit rare and the ability to do frozen sections in the OR is probably needed. The AUA Guidelines goes over the partial orchiectomies rather well and Princess Margaret in Toronto has recently published on their series. Of note, it looks like 20% went on to have full-orchiectomies and there is no mention of patient satisfaction, given that while preserving the testicle, it may not feel like a normal testicle given the portion that is removed.

          Oct. 2005 felt lump but waited over 7 months.
          06.15.06 "You have Cancer"
          06.26.06 Left I/O
          06.29.06 Personal Cancer Diagnosis Date: Got my own pathology report from medical records.
          06.30.06 It's Official - Stage I Seminoma
          Founded the Testicular Cancer Society
          6.29.13 Summited Mt. Kilimanjaro for 7th Cancerversary

          For some reason I do not get notices of private messages on here so please feel free to email me directly at if you would like to chat privately so as to avoid any delays.