6 Common Risk Factors For Testicular Cancer

Prevention & Awareness

March 26, 2019

Testicular cancer is most common in men ages 15-34. Aside from age, researchers have found six factors that could increase a man’s chance of developing testicular cancer.


Undescended testicle(s)

Undescended testicles, or Cryptorchidism, is when one or both of a baby’s testicles does not descend from the abdomen into the scrotum before birth. This is typical in premature births. In most cases, undescended testicles continue to move down into the scrotum within the first six to twelve months after birth. If not, treatment may be needed.


Personal history of testicular cancer

Men who have had cancer in one testicle have an increased risk for developing cancer in the other testicle.


Family history of testicular cancer

Men with a father or brother who has had testicular cancer are also at increased risk. It is important to note that only a small amount of cases occur in families. Most men with testicular cancer do not have a family history.



[CALLOUT: Nearly half of testicular cancer risk comes from inherited genetic faults. – The Institute of Cancer Research]


In most cases of cancer, genetics accounts for less than 20% of risk. Not so with testicular cancer, according to research by scientists at The Institute of Cancer Research, London. They found that “genetic inheritance is much more important in testicular cancer than in most other cancer types.”



Some studies have shown that men with HIV, and specifically those with AIDS, are at a higher risk for developing testicular cancer.  



The risk in white men is about 4 to 5 times that of black and Asian-American men. The cause for this is undetermined. Worldwide, it is found most commonly in the United States and Europe and least often in Asian and Africa.


Having one or more risk factor does not mean that you have the disease. For more information on testicular cancer, please speak with your care provider or learn more at cancer.org.