One important factor that men are more at risk of some health issues is that men are less likely to visit their doctor or a pharmacist than women and they are less likely than women to acknowledge illness or seek help (Men’s Health Forum). Some illnesses, such as prostate cancer and testicular cancer, only affect men, so it's important to have a good understanding of what to look out for.
Testicular cancer is the most common type of cancer to affect men between the ages of 15 and 49. The good news is that, when caught early, testicular cancer is highly treatable and highly curable.
You can complete a self-check every month or so. This will help you learn how things normally look and feel, making it easier for you to notice any changes. Watch the video from Movember below to how to do this, step by step.
Prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men in the UK. About 1 in 8 men in the UK will develop it in their lifetime. Prostate cancer mostly affects men over the age of 50, and your risk increases with age. The risk is even higher for black men and men with a family history of prostate cancer.
There is no national screening programme for prostate cancer. Instead, there is an informed choice programme. This is called prostate cancer risk management. Healthy men aged 50 or over can ask their GP about PSA testing and have a conversation about whether this is right for you.
A PSA test is a blood test used to measure the level of Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA) concentration in the blood. It’s the primary method of testing for prostate cancer and it can be carried out free on the NHS after a conversation with your GP. Learn more about PSA tests.
If results show a raised PSA level, your GP may suggest further tests to help decide if you need further treatment.
- When you’re 50, have a conversation with your GP about PSA testing.
- If you’re black or have a family history of prostate cancer, have this conversation at 45.
Visit the Movember webiste for more information and signposting resources.
When should I see my doctor?
Cancer Research UK recommends you see your doctor if you have:
- An unusual lump or swelling in part of one testicle
- A sharp pain in the testicle or scrotum
- A heavy scrotum
- An increase in the firmness or feel
- An unusual difference between one testicle and the other
Your symptoms are unlikely to be cancer but it’s important to get them checked by a doctor.