Orchiectomy is the removal of the testicles.
The penis and the scrotum, the pouch of skin that holds the testicles, are left
intact. An orchiectomy is done to stop most of the body's production of
prostate cancer usually needs in order to continue
These methods work equally well for stopping the production of testosterone by the testicles. These surgeries are about as complicated as a vasectomy and take less than 30 minutes.
Orchiectomy can be done as an
outpatient procedure or with a short hospital stay. You can typically resume regular activities in 1 to 2 weeks. And you can expect a full recovery in
2 to 4 weeks.
Orchiectomy may help relieve
symptoms, prevent complications, and prolong survival for
advanced prostate cancer. Radiation treatment is
sometimes needed also.
Orchiectomy often causes the tumor
to shrink and relieves bone pain.
This surgery does not cure
prostate cancer, although it may prolong survival.
Orchiectomy causes sudden hormone changes in the
body. Side effects from hormone changes may include:
Testosterone levels in the body can be lowered in two ways, either with surgery or with hormone therapy. Having surgery (an orchiectomy) is a permanent way to lower testosterone. Hormone therapy (using medicines) is not permanent, so a man will need to keep taking pills or having shots to keep his testosterone levels low.
Some men choose to have reconstructive
surgery after an orchiectomy. For this, the surgeon replaces the testicles with
Complete the surgery information form (PDF)(What is a PDF document?) to help you prepare for this surgery.
ByHealthwise StaffPrimary Medical ReviewerE. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal MedicineKathleen Romito, MD - Family MedicineSpecialist Medical ReviewerChristopher G. Wood, MD, FACS - Urology, Oncology
Current as ofMay 3, 2017
Current as of:
May 3, 2017
E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine & Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine & Christopher G. Wood, MD, FACS - Urology, Oncology
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Last modified on: 8 September 2017