There is only a very small percentage of males who can say that they have a killer between their legs without having to lie about it. I happen to be one of those males. And before you start to roll your eyes to the heavens and puffing your cheeks out in exasperation at the prospect of another testosterone filled recount of conquests and sexual exploits, please bear with me. Actually my initial statement was not completely true. “Phah!” I can hear you say. “‘Not completely true’ he says. He probably has a needle between his thighs.” I should have said that I had a killer between my legs, but not anymore, thankfully. The truth is that I am a survivor of testicular cancer.
It all started in January of 2010. I was having a bath one evening when I felt that my right testicle was unusually large and rock hard. Strangely I could not feel any pain even when I applied pressure to it. I was not sure what was going on; I was convinced that the swelling was not there the day before although could not be completely sure. I decided to go to see a doctor the next day since I suspected that this could be some sort of infection of sorts. I decided not to tell my wife about it, hoping that this would be something trivial which my doctor would sort out the next day.
“How long have you noticed the swelling?” Dr. Brooks asked, a concerned look on his face.
“Only yesterday, while I was bathing” came the reply.
“Does it hurt to the touch?”
“No” I said hopefully, after all that was a good sign, no? Dr Brooks’ expression did not change however.
“So you’re sure that this swelling is very recent.” He asked once again. I nodded. “All right.” He wrote down a prescription for antibiotics. Take two of these pills every day for ten days, then come back and see me.”
“So you think that it’s just an infection?”
He lifted his eyebrows. “If the swelling is recent, antibiotics should solve the problem within ten days.” he answered without actually answering my question.
I left Dr. Brooks’ clinic not knowing exactly how I should feel. I had a sinking feeling although I was still stubbornly holding on to the hope that this was something which could be easily resolved. Once again I kept everything hidden from my wife, after all this was going to go away soon enough anyway.
After eight days of taking the antibiotics without any visible improvements in the swelling, I was resigning myself for the worst. I did not wait for the ten days to pass; I went straight to the doctor. This time Dr. was less subtle although he still didn’t mention the ‘c’ word. “I think that the next step would be to take an ultrasound of your testicle, it might be a tumour which will have to be removed.”
My heart sank, but I still put on a brave face. “So shall I make an appointment for an ultrasound?”
His reply froze the blood in my veins. “I suggest that you go right now. There is a private clinic about ten minutes from here. Ask for Dr. William. I will phone him that you will be coming.” He sketched a little map of how I should get there.
…To be continued