The following is a bit embarrassing but I feel it is important to share in case other men find themselves in the same position. Last week I found a lump in my left testicle; I came across it by pure accident. There was no pain as such but once I found this lump it was impossible to ignore it. I automatically assumed the worst but began scouring the internet for evidence that this wasn’t testicular cancer. I felt afraid but the idea of going to the hospital scared me even more -terrified of what they might say.
I Should Know Better
I qualified as a nurse and have no problem lecturing other people about what they should do if they develop any unusual symptoms. In western countries health organizations have spent a lot money educating men about the symptoms of testicular cancer and the importance of seeking a prompt assessment. Despite all this my impulse was to self-diagnose using Google – only looking for information that backed what I wanted to believe. I am well aware that a lot of the information on the web is inaccurate but I was prepared to accept almost any source that offered reassurance.
The last week has been difficult. Sleep has been hard to come by as my imagination has run wild. I have been reinterpreting other recent symptoms as evidence of metastasis; maybe those innocent cherry angiomas that appeared a few weeks ago are evidence that I’m riddled with cancer. The possibility of dying was one thing but my main concern was how my wife and son would cope. Where would I get the money if I needed expensive treatments? All this worry has been making life difficult – I also realised that my behavior was just plain stupid. Today I did what I should have done a week ago – I went to see a doctor.
It didn’t take the doctor long to diagnose the lump in my testicles. It isn’t testicular cancer but instead just spermatocele which is usually fairly harmless. I automatically felt a huge weight lift off my shoulders. I arrived at the hospital like a man facing the gallows but left with a new spring in my step. During the check-up it was noted that my blood pressure was a bit high, but this is probably to be expected from all the worry.
The Lesson Learnt From My Experience
I spent the last week full of worry for no reason; I could have been spared this by just going to the doctor earlier. Even if it had been bad news there was no way that ignoring things was going to make the news any better. Lance Armstrong ignored the lump in his testicles and nearly died because of it; he did have testicular cancer and it spread to his lungs because he waited. My advice to other people is do as I say and not as I did – get any lumps checked out right away.