UCLA's Testicular Cancer Program is multidisciplinary, comprehensive, and focuses on the whole patient. We offer personalized care that includes the latest testicular cancer treatments in surgery, chemotherapy and radiation therapy. The Program is part of the UCLA Institute of Urologic Oncology and is affiliated with UCLA's Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center. We are committed to a team approach to caring for our patients with testicular cancer. This includes well-coordinated efforts from our urologists, medical oncologists, radiation oncologists, pathologists, radiologists, nurses, and office staff. We also offer mental health support services for patients and their families. All these resources allow for customized perspectives in deciding on the best treatment for each patient.
The UCLA Testicular Cancer Program is directed by Dr. Mark Litwin, Chair, Department of Urology and Professor of Urology and Public Health. Dr. Litwin joined the UCLA faculty in 1993 after training in urologic oncology at Harvard. Dr. Litwin is a longtime testicular cancer survivor himself, so he knows this disease from both sides of the white coat.
Testicular cancer primarily affects young adult men and, fortunately, is very treatable. In most cases, it is curable, but self-exam is key for early diagnosis. For baseball player, Connor Joe, cancer was discovered in 2020 during a physical exam while in Spring Training with the Los Angeles Dodgers. Following surgery at UCLA and chemotherapy, Connor is cancer-free and playing professional baseball. Watch Connor's Story >
Testicular cancer is a disease in which cells become malignant (cancerous) in the male testis (the glands inside the scrotum that produce sperm and male hormones). It is the most common solid tumor diagnosed in men between the ages of 15 and 35 in the United States. According to the most recent statistics from the American Cancer Society, approximately 9,610 new cases are diagnosed each year, but fewer than 500 men die of the disease each year. Thanks to advances in the treatment of testicular cancer, the prognosis is excellent for most men diagnosed with testicular cancer. When found and treated early, more than 95 percent of men are cured.
Testicular cancer signs and symptoms may include, a painless lump or swelling in the scrotum, hardness in the testicle, pain or discomfort in the testicle and a dull ache in the lower abdomen, back, or groin. More information about testicular cancer symptoms >
Testicular cancer is often found by the patient himself during a self-exam, or found by a doctor during a routine physical exam. In order to find out the reason for your symptoms, UCLA Urologists will perform a physical exam of the testicles and abdomen and may order laboratory and diagnostic tests. More information about testicular cancer diagnosis >
UCLA urologists and UCLA Testicular Cancer Program doctors have been pioneers in developing new innovations and technologies leading to safer and more effective treatments for men with testicular cancer, using a multidisciplinary, translational approach to care. As a result, treatment plans are individualized to each patient’s cancer grade and stage as well as current state of health.
The UCLA Testicular Cancer Program offers a variety of innovative treatment options to patients who have been diagnosed with testicular cancer, including standard and minimally invasive robotic surgery, as well as chemotherapy and radiation therapy. Dr. Litwin is one of the nation’s most experienced testicular cancer surgeons specializing in robotic retroperitoneal lymph node dissection and meticulous removal of residual masses after chemotherapy. More information about testicular cancer treatment >
The UCLA Testicular Cancer Program offers patients access to ground-breaking experimental drugs in its Clinical Trials Program that allows patients to receive tomorrow’s approved drugs today. Clinical Trials for Testicular Cancer >
The UCLA Testicular Cancer Program and the UCLA Institute of Urologic Oncology maintain diverse research programs for urologic cancers, leading to ground-breaking clinical trials offered to our UCLA patients. For testicular cancer, researchers have found in recent years that variations in certain genes may increase the risk of testicular cancer. While further studies are needed, these discoveries may help identify men at higher risk. Scientists are also trying to learn more about the changes in the DNA of testicular cancer cells. The hope is that with better understanding about the causes of testicular cancer, better treatment options will become available to those men diagnosed with this disease. Other areas of research in men with testicular cancer include long-term survivorship, quality of life, and access to care.
Testicular cancer is usually curable, even in advanced cases, but self-exam is key for early diagnosis. Ted Dunlap, an avid basketball player, was diagnosed early with testicular cancer. Following treatment at UCLA, Ted is cancer-free and one year later he celebrated the birth of his first child. Watch Ted's Story >