Well lads, it's time to check yourself before you wreck yourself! A few conditions that affect the testicles are serious, but most are not so being obsessed or frightened for no good reason is not a good idea. Knowing what your testicles normally feel and look like makes good sense so that changes can be spotted and advice sought quickly if needed.
Note: It is normal for one testis to be slightly bigger than the other and the left testis often hangs lower than the right. Its nature's way of letting you cross your legs!
Signs to look out for:
- · A lump in one testicle
- · Pain and tenderness in either testicle
- · Discharge or pus from the penis
- · Blood in the sperm at ejaculation
- · A build-up of fluid inside the scrotum
- · A heavy or dragging feeling in the groin or scrotum
- · An enlargement of the breasts with or without tenderness
- · An increase in size of a testicle (one testicle is normally larger then the other but the size and shape should remain more or less the same).
How to check your testicles
- Do the self-examination lying in a warm bath or while having a long shower, as this softens the skin of the scrotum (skin sac that holds the testicles), which makes it easier to feel the testicles inside.
- Examine the scrotum, looking for any lumps on the skin or swellings inside.
- Cradle the whole scrotum and testicles in the palm of your hand and feel the difference between the testicles. One is almost always larger and lying lower. This is completely normal.
- Examine each testicle in turn, and then compare them with each other. Use both hands and gently roll each testicle between thumb and forefinger.
- Check for any lumps or swellings as both testicles should be smooth except where the duct that carries sperm to the penis, the epididymis, runs. This lies along the top and back of the testicle and normally feels bumpy.
It is not at all uncommon to find a lump in your testicles. There are many conditions that can be easily confused with testicular cancer, and most of them are not anything as serious.
If you have found a lump, you are advised to go to your doctor for further examination.
Also see Men's Health