Living with and after testicular cancer
Being diagnosed with cancer can have a big impact on your life, even after you've finished treatment.
When you’ve finished all your treatment, you’ll go back for regular appointments at the hospital (follow-up). You’ll carry on being carefully checked, by having blood tests for tumour markers and sometimes other tests. If the tumour markers go up, this can be a sign that the cancer has come back. This means you’ll need more treatment, which can still usually cure the cancer. There’s more information about tumour markers in our section on tests for testicular cancer.
You might find it embarrassing to talk about your private parts and feel awkward talking to doctors or your family about it.
Try not to let this put you off talking about things. It can be really helpful to let someone know how you're feeling, so that you don't bottle things up.
Fertility is the ability to have children. Unfortunately, some cancer treatments can affect a young person’s fertility, but your doctors will always think about this when planning your treatment. They will do their best to make sure you stay fertile after treatment.
If only one of your testicles has been removed, the one left will continue to make sperm, so you'll still be able to become a dad in the future. If your other testicle is working okay, it will produce enough of the hormone testosterone. This also means that you'll still be able to have sex.
But if you’ve had an operation to remove both of your testicles, or the lymph nodes at the back of your tummy, your fertility and your ability to have sex may be affected. This is a really tough thing to have to cope with on top of everything else that you’re going through. Many hospitals have counsellors and people specially trained to give help and support. Our section on relationships, sex and fertility goes into all this in much more detail and might be useful for you (and your partner or family) to take a look at.
We have more information in our section about relationships, sex and fertility.
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If you're looking for information about testicular cancer in men of all ages please see our general testicular cancer section.