International Men's Day 2021: Link Between Testicular Cancer And Infertility, Here Are Ways To Boost Fertility

On International Men's Day 2021, check out the connection between testicular cancer and infertility, and ways to boost fertility.

Navya Kharbanda
Written by: Navya KharbandaUpdated at: Nov 18, 2021 16:04 IST
International Men's Day 2021: Link Between Testicular Cancer And Infertility, Here Are Ways To Boost Fertility

3rd Edition of HealthCare Heroes Awards 2023

Testicular cancer is a very real and ignored threat. It usually develops innocuously as a painless sweeling of the testicle which is usually ignored. In fact, one of the early identifying characteristics is a reduction or a loss of sensation in the involved testicle. Testicular cancer is not a single entity but a spectrum of different subtypes of cancer. Hence diagnosis involves removal of the affected testicle, called orchidectomy; for evaluation and for deciding further treatment.

Based on the result, further treatment is given in the form of either radiation or chemotherapy or sometimes even surgery. Testicular cancer usually affects the younger population, between the ages of twenty years to forty years. Which is why fertility is a major issue for such patients. With International Men's Day 2021 around the corner, Onlymyhealth editorial team spoke to Dr. Prasad Kasbekar, Consultant, Surgical Oncologist, Masina Hospital, Mumbai, about the impact of testicular cancer on fertility and ways to reduce the effects. 

Impact of testicular cancer on fertility

Testicular cancer itself is known to reduce one’s fertility and some men may present during an evaluation for infertility. Tumours of the testicular cancer can block or harm parts of the normal testes. But the main issue of infertility arises when one is taking treatment for the cancer. Chemotherapy and radiation can result in a temporary or a permanent loss of fertility due to damage of the remaining testicle and sperm.

However, it is still possible to be fertile after treatment. Fertility usually takes up to two years to return post completion of treatment. A study showed that approximately forty eight percent of patients managed to conceive two years post completion of treatment. Thus, counselling is a very important aspect of treatment of testicular cancer. Those desirous of future reproduction are usually explained regarding the treatment protocol and also as regards to sperm banking.

Sperm banking is the collection and storage of semen prior to initiation of treatment. Semen can be stored safely in frozen state for years till the person decides to use it for obvious reasons. It is a very easy and accurate method to preserve one’s fertility. Infertile men can be more prone to developing testicular cancer as some of the factors for infertility and cancer may be interlinked.

Also read: Know The Symptoms And Causes Of Testicular Cancer

If doctors catch the cancer early, it is very treatable and the patient can be completely cured of the disease. The best method for early diagnosis is by self-examination. This can best be done in the shower during a bath. Feel both the testicles individually with your thumb, index finger and middle finger. By rolling the testicle between the fingers, look for any difference in size, shape, consistency and sensation. If you find anything suspicious, then go consult your doctor.

Ways to boost fertility

Here are 3 natural ways to boost fertility in men:

1. Exercise

Exercise is beneficial for your overall  health and can also help in boosting thd testosterone levels and improving fertility in men. A few studies prove that men who exercise regularly have higher testosterone levels and good semen quality as compared to men who are physically inactive. But, you should avoid excessive physical exercise as it can even reverse and reduce your testosterone levels.

2. Reduce stress

Stress is a major factors that can reduce your sexual satisfaction and affect your fertility. Taking too much stress can increase the levels of cortisol, which can further leave strong negative effects on testosterone. When the cortisol levels go up, testosterone levels can go down.

Also read: Men’s Health: Here Are Some Notable Symptoms Of Male Infertility

3. Healthy diet

Taking a healthy diet is also important to boost fertility. Vitamin D and zinc can be essential nutrients for male and female fertility. Both of them can boost testosterone levels. You can include foods rich in these nutrients in your diet. The medicinal herb ashwagandha is also beneficial for improving male fertility. 

Image credits: Freepik