6 Testicular Cancer Risk Factors Every Man Should Know

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testicular cancer image

Risk factors are the inherited or acquired factors that increase the chance of developing cancer in a person. Several epidemiological studies have suggested a number of genetic and environmental factors that may predispose to testicular cancer. Knowledge about them helps us to make the necessary lifestyle choices.

Risk Factors for Testicular Cancer explained with Video and Image

Video Transcript:

The incidence of testicular cancer is highest in North-European and least in Asians and Africans. Cryptorchidism, or failure of descent of the testis into the scrotal sac, is also a risk factor for the disease.

In this condition, testis may lie either in the abdomen or in the inguinal canal, as you can see in the figure. Various syndromes such as Down’s syndrome. Klinefelter’s syndrome and testicular dysgenesis syndrome may also be a risk factor for the disease.

Previous history of cancer in the opposite testis, previous testicular biopsy, testicular atrophy or impaired fertility also increase the testicular cancer risk factor.

testicular cancer risk factors

Testicular Cancer Risk Factors:

Cryptorchidism

Cryptorchidism

It is a condition characterized by failure of testes to descend from the abdomen to scrotum before birth. This is considered as the major testicular cancer risk factors.

Race and Ethnicity

race and ethnicity

The risk of testicular cancer is around 4 to 5 times higher in white men living in the United States and Europe compared to that of black men living in Africa or Asia. However, the reason for this difference in incidence is unknown.


Personal History

Individuals with a personal history of testicular are generally at higher risk of developing second cancer in another testicle.

Family history

Family history

Risk of developing testicular cancer increases in an individual with a history of testicular cancer in close relatives.

Genetic Cancer Predisposition Syndromes

Genetic Cancer Predisposition Syndromes

Some inherited cancer predisposition syndromes (caused by a mutation in certain genes which are generally transferred from one generation to other) have been reported to be associated with a high incidence rate of testicular cancer. Following are some examples: Down’s Syndrome (caused due to defect in chromosome 21); Klinefelter’s syndrome (caused due to the presence of two or more X chromosomes in males); testicular dysgenesis, and testicular feminization syndrome.

Infections

infections

Infection with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) is associated with an increased risk of testicular cancer.

Other Factors

Abnormal development of testicles, testicular atrophy due to injury, orchitis, and exposure to radiation in past is associated with increased level of follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) which is postulated to increase the risk of testicular cancer.

Obese and tall men are also considered to be at increased risk of developing testicular cancer.

Read more about testicular cancer symptoms, investigations, staging and treatment.

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