Surveillance for testicular cancer

If the risk of the cancer coming back after your operation is very low, your doctor may recommend surveillance. This is when the doctor look for signs of the cancer coming back so that it can be found and treated early, when it’s easier to cure. It means you avoid having adjuvant treatment, which you may not need. You only have treatment if your tumour marker levels increase or scans show that the cancer has come back.

It’s extremely important to go to your surveillance appointments. If the cancer does come back (this only happens in a small number of men), it will be picked up early and still has a high chance of being cured by treatment. Men whose cancer comes back during surveillance may need a longer course of chemotherapy.

What to expect

Your specialist will tell you what kind of monitoring you’ll have. You will have your tumour markers checked regularly. You’ll also have regular chest x-rays and occasional CT scans. Your specialist will also do a physical examination, check your other testicle, and ask how you’ve been feeling.

Over time, as the risk of the cancer coming back decreases, your appointments and tests will be less frequent. Always let your doctor know if you’re having problems with new or ongoing symptoms, or if you’re having emotional or sexual difficulties. This helps them to assess you properly and give you the best care and support. It’s also an important way of being involved in your own healthcare.

Back to Treating

Making treatment decisions

Your doctors may tell you there are different options for your treatment. Having the right information will help you make the right decision for you.


Surgery involves removing all or part of the cancer with an operation. It is an important treatment for many cancers.


Chemotherapy uses drugs to treat many different types of cancer. It is most commonly given as an injection into a vein or as tablets or capsules.


Radiotherapy is the use of high-energy rays, usually x-rays and similar rays (such as electrons) to treat cancer.

Clinical trials

Many people are offered a trial as part of treatment. Find out more to help you decide if a trial is right for you.

Life after cancer treatment

You might be thinking about how to get back to normal following treatment. Find advice, information and support about coping with and after cancer.