Font Size

Cancer of the Testicle (cont.)

Testicular Cancer Causes

It is not known exactly what causes testicular cancers. Certain factors, listed here, appear to increase a man's risk of developing a testicular cancer. Many others have been proposed, but are either unproven or discredited.

Cryptorchidism: The testicles form in the abdomen of the developing fetus. While the fetus is still in the womb, the testicles begin their gradual descent to the scrotum. Oftentimes, this descent is not complete at birth but occurs during the first year of life. Failure of the testicle to appropriately descend into the scrotum is called undescended testicle, or cryptorchidism.

  • It can occur on one or both sides.
  • If the testicles do not fully descend, the infant usually undergoes surgery to bring the testicle(s) into the scrotum.
  • The risk for testicular cancer is three to five times higher in males born with cryptorchidism, even after surgery to bring the testicle(s) into the scrotum.
  • Because of this increased risk, men with this type of condition should be even more rigorous about performing regular testicular self-exams.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 6/11/2014
Medical Author:
Medical Editor:
Medical Editor:

Must Read Articles Related to Cancer of the Testicle

18 Cancer Symptoms
Cancer Symptoms Most symptoms and signs of cancer may also be explained by harmless conditions, so it's important to limit one's risk factors and undergo appropriate cancer scr...learn more >>
Testicular Pain
Testicular Pain Testicular pain has many causes including trauma, learn more >>
Testicular Self-Exam
Testicular Self-Exam A testicular self-examination (TSE) is useful in the detection of cancer of the testicles. Testicular cancer is the most common solid tumor found in males age 2...learn more >>

Read What Your Physician is Reading on Medscape

Testicular Tumors »

Testicular cancer is relatively uncommon in the United States, with approximately 5500 cases per year.

Read More on Medscape Reference »

Medical Dictionary