Surgery in Testicular Cancer


What is Orchiectomy?

Orchiectomy is the removal of the testicles as a treatment of testicular cancer. It may also be performed to treat other conditions such as Prostate Cancer or in the event of severe trauma to one or both testes. The penis, the scrotum, and the pouch of skin that holds the testicles, are left intact.

An orchiectomy is performed as a treatment for:

  • Testicular or Prostate Cancer
  • Male Breast Cancer
  • Cancer prevention in men with an undescended testicle after puberty
  • Severe trauma or injury to the testicle
  • Male-to-female gender reassignment surgery

How is Orchiectomy performed?

Simple orchiectomy

One or both testicles is removed through a small cut in the scrotum. This may be performed to treat male Breast Cancer or Prostate Cancer when your doctor wants to limit the amount of testosterone produced by your body.

Radical inguinal orchiectomy

One or both testicles are removed through a small cut in the lower abdominal area, instead of the scrotum. This may be performed if you have found a lump in your testicle and your doctor wants to test your testicular tissue for cancer.

Subcapsular orchiectomy

In this procedure, the tissues around the testicles are removed from the scrotum. This allows to keep the scrotum intact so that it looks like nothing has been removed.

Bilateral orchiectomy

Both the testicles are removed in this procedure. This may be performed if you have Prostate Cancer or male Breast Cancer.

What are the side effects of orchiectomy?

Orchiectomy may cause sudden hormone changes in the body. Side effects from hormone changes may include:

  • Sterility.
  • Loss of sexual interest.
  • Erection problems.
  • Hot flashes.
  • Larger breasts
  • Weight gain.
  • Loss of muscle mass.
  • Thin or brittle bones.