Orchiectomy

WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW:

Orchiectomy, also called orchidectomy, is surgery to remove one or both of your testicles. Your testicles are egg-shaped organs that lie inside your scrotum. They are supported by your spermatic cord.

AFTER YOU LEAVE:

Medicines:

  • Antibiotics: This medicine is given to fight or prevent an infection caused by bacteria. Always take your antibiotics exactly as ordered by your healthcare provider. Do not stop taking your medicine unless directed by your healthcare provider. Never save antibiotics or take leftover antibiotics that were given to you for another illness.

  • Antihormone medicine: Antihormone medicine may be given if your testosterone level does not decrease enough after your surgery.

  • Bone strengthening medicines: Bisphosphonates, calcium, and vitamin D supplements may be needed after orchiectomy. These medicines help decrease bone loss and reduce your risk of broken bones.

  • Pain medicine: You may be given a prescription medicine to decrease pain. Do not wait until the pain is severe before you take this medicine.

  • Take your medicine as directed. Call your healthcare provider if you think your medicine is not helping or if you have side effects. Tell him if you are allergic to any medicine. Keep a list of the medicines, vitamins, and herbs you take. Include the amounts, and when and why you take them. Bring the list or the pill bottles to follow-up visits. Carry your medicine list with you in case of an emergency.

Follow up with your primary healthcare provider as directed:

You may need x-ray scans and blood tests after your surgery. Write down your questions so you remember to ask them during your visits.

Ice:

Ice helps decrease swelling and pain. Ice may also help prevent tissue damage. Use an ice pack or put crushed ice in a plastic bag. Cover it with a towel, and place it on your incision for 15 to 20 minutes every hour as directed.

Wound care:

You will have a bandage over your surgery site. Do not take the bandage off until your primary healthcare provider says it is okay. You may also need to wear a jock strap for support and comfort. Ask for more information about caring for your wound and using your jock strap.

Other treatments:

If you have cancer, you may need the following after your orchiectomy:

  • Chemotherapy: This medicine works by killing tumor cells that were not removed with surgery. Chemotherapy may also help cure cancer.

  • Radiation therapy: This is a treatment using x-rays or gamma rays. Radiation helps kill any cancer cells that may be left in your testicle area. Radiation will also help prevent any remaining cancer cells from spreading.

Contact your primary healthcare provider if:

  • You are nauseated or vomiting.

  • You have a cough or feel weak and achy.

  • You have a fever or chills.

  • You have questions or concerns about your condition or care.

Seek care immediately or call 911 if:

  • You have bad pain in your legs or your legs become very swollen.

  • You have lower abdominal or back pain that does not go away, even after you take medicine.

  • You have trouble urinating or having a bowel movement.

  • Your incision is swollen, red, bleeding, or has pus coming from it.

  • Your stitches come apart.

  • You feel lightheaded and short of breath.

  • You have chest pain when you take a deep breath or cough, or you cough up blood.

  • Your leg feels warm, tender, and painful. It may look swollen and red.

© 2014 Truven Health Analytics Inc. Information is for End User's use only and may not be sold, redistributed or otherwise used for commercial purposes. All illustrations and images included in CareNotes® are the copyrighted property of A.D.A.M., Inc. or Truven Health Analytics.

The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

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