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Recovering from testicular cancer surgery (orchiectomy)

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What’s the testicle removal recovery time?

Having testicular cancer surgery (an orchiectomy) is no small thing. Make sure you give yourself time to recover before diving back into things.

Usually, you should be able to get back to work or school in two to three weeks. Your surgeon will fill you in on your recommended testicular cancer treatment recovery time. They may also advise you to wait around six weeks before doing any heavy lifting.

During your recovery period, your surgeon may recommend athletic underwear or scrotal support to protect your healing scrotum. You may experience some discomfort sitting down after surgery, but it’ll get better as your muscles heal.

Overall, you should be able to do most of your normal activities after two to three weeks, but it's important to listen to your body. If there's anything that worries you, feels strange or hurts more than you would expect, get it checked out.


Life after orchiectomy: coming to terms with physical changes

Testicle removal can leave you feeling weird for a while. It might take some getting used to, but many men say that it’s actually more comfortable without testicles.

Hear some firsthand experiences about physical changes from some guys who've been through it.

Recovery time after testicle removal can differ from guy to guy. Try to take it easy – use this time to catch up on sleep (or that Netflix show you’ve been wanting to watch). And if you feel a bit “off” after the whole experience, it can help to connect with others who’ve had a nut or two removed because of testicular cancer.

Testicle removal surgery recovery tips

  • Rest when you feel tired. Sleep will help speed up recovery.

  • Lie down for 15 minutes several times each day for the first two weeks after surgery. This will help reduce the swelling of your scrotum.

  • Try to walk each day. Start small and slowly increase the amount you walk each day. Walking boosts blood flow as well as helping prevent pneumonia and constipation.

  • Avoid strenuous activities, such as bicycle riding, jogging, weightlifting, or aerobic exercise during your recovery.

  • Avoid lifting anything that would make you strain. Yep, that means that carrying the groceries or picking up your kids is somebody else’s job for now.

  • Don’t drive for two weeks after surgery, or until your doctor gives you the green light.

  • Lightly pat your wound area dry after showering.

  • Don’t have a bath for two weeks after surgery.

  • Ask your doctor about when you can have sex or masturbate again. Don’t worry, they get these questions all the time.

  • Put ice or a cold pack on your scrotum for 10 to 20 minutes every hour or two during the day for the first few days after surgery. Put a thin cloth between the ice and your skin.

What to do next

  • Follow up with your doctor to get your pathology results.

  • Schedule a check-up appointment with your surgeon or doctor.

  • Schedule an appointment with an oncologist. Your doctor or surgeon should help you choose one.

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