How Testicular Cancer is Diagnosed

At Providence Saint John’s Health Center, our urologists diagnose and treat testicular cancer with the most advanced therapies available. We provide focused, personalized care with a team of specialists that will help you make informed decisions.

In order to reach a diagnosis for testicular cancer, we take a thorough medical history and conduct a physical examination to be as accurate as possible. We’ll ask questions, make note of any symptoms you may have experienced and include any other pertinent information.

The following tests may be used to diagnose testicular cancer or to find out if it has spread:

  • Ultrasound: This test uses sound waves to produce images of internal organs. A wand-like instrument is moved across the scrotum and a computer creates an image on a monitor.
  • Blood tests: High levels of certain proteins called tumor markers can be detected in the blood.
  • CT scans: These imaging tests can help determine if testicular cancer has spread to lymph nodes, lungs, liver or other organs.
  • MRI: Magnetic resonance imaging can determine if testicular cancer has spread to the brain or spinal cord.
  • Bone scan: This test can help determine if testicular cancer has spread to bones.

Testicular Cancer Staging

If you are diagnosed with testicular cancer, your urologic oncologist will determine the stage of the disease. Staging is a way to classify cancer by how much of the disease is in the body and whether it has spread. This helps doctors plan the best way to treat the cancer.