Type of Surgery
Last updated: 02/17/2009
Orchiectomy is the surgical removal of one or both testicles, or testes, in the human male. It is also called an orchidectomy, particularly in British publications. The
removal of both testicles is known as a bilateral orchiectomy,...
or castration, because the person is no longer able to reproduce. Emasculation is another word that is sometimes used for castration of a male. Castration in women is the surgical removal of both ovaries (bilateral oophorectomy).
Inguinal orchiectomy is a relatively minor surgical procedure to remove a testicle. The procedure is generally performed by a urologist. Often it is performed as same-day surgery, with the patient returning home within hours of the procedure. Some patients elect to have a prosthetic testicle inserted into their scrotum.
A 6cm incision is made above the pubic bone on the side corresponding to the testicle to be removed. The testicle is then pulled up through the inguinal canal, the spermatic cord is clamped off in two places and cut between the clamps.
The inguinal orchiectomy is a necessary procedure if testicular cancer is suspected.
If the orchiectomy is performed to diagnose cancer, the testicle and spermatic cord are then sent to a pathologist to determine the makeup of the tumor, and the extent of spread within the testicle and cord.
The pathology report, along with pre-surgical imaging studies and tumor markers, will determine the course of treatment.
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