How will my physician diagnose a testicular tumor?
Most testicular tumors are first noticed by a parent or health care provider as non-tender swellings in a boy's scrotum. Most of these scrotal masses, however, result from far more common problems, such as the following:
Your child's doctor will usually be able to distinguish a testicular tumor from these more common conditions by the way the mass feels and if a light shines through it or not. In addition to a complete medical history and physical examination, your child's doctor may also want to perform some combination of the following tests:
- Ultrasound (also called sonography)- This imaging technique is the best way to identify what the mass is and whether more tests or an operation are needed. Ultrasounds are used to view internal organs as they function, and to assess blood flow.
- Computerized tomography scan (also called a CT or CAT scan)- A CT scan shows detailed images of any part of the body, including the bones, muscles, fat and organs. CT scans are more detailed than general X-rays.
- Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)- a diagnostic procedure that uses a combination of large magnets, radiofrequencies and a computer to produce detailed images of organs and structures within the body.
- Biopsy- a sample of tissue is removed from the tumor and examined under a microscope.
- Complete blood count (CBC)- a measurement of the size, number and maturity of different blood cells in a specific amount of blood.
- Additional blood tests- These may include blood chemistry analyses, evaluation of liver and kidney functions and genetic studies.