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Thursday, December 12, 2013
Is Enlarged Testicle a Sign of Prostate Cancer?
My dad had surgery for prostate cancer almost 10 years ago. Except for frequent bathroom breaks, he has been fine. This week he started complaining about swelling in his private area. My mother says that one of his testes is the size of a grapefruit. Could this be a return of his prostate cancer? What should he do?
He should see his urologist. It does not seem to me to be consistent with prostate cancer recurrence but that possibility can easily be checked by getting a PSA. PSA should be unmeasurable if your father's prostate cancer was cured. Thus, measuring PSA in a cured patient will demonstrate an undetectable PSA. If in contrast, your father's PSA is very high, then his cancer is not cured and one possibility for his recent changes on physical examination would be recurrence of prostate cancer although a large testicular or peritesticular mass is unlikely to be prostate cancer.
R Bruce Bracken, MD
Professor of Surgery
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati