An orchiectomy (also known as an orchidectomy) is surgery to remove one or both of the testicles.

Your doctor may recommend this procedure due to disease, such as testicular cancer or metastatic prostate cancer, or severe injury to the testicles.
Your doctor will assess your health to ensure you are ready to undergo the procedure by ordering blood tests, chest x-ray, and electrocardiogram (EKG) and checking your tumor markers. You will be asked to avoid food and water for at least six to eight hours before the procedure. You will be given other instructions as well, including information regarding an artificial testicle.
The doctor will make an incision in the lower abdomen just above the crease at the top of the thigh in patients with testicular cancer and an incision will be made in the scrotum directly in patients with prostate cancer. When the testicle is located, the blood vessels feeding into it will be tied off and the testicle will be removed. The incision will then be closed. The procedure takes approximately 45 to 60 minutes and requires one night’s stay at the hospital. Some patients might be able to go home after the procedure.
  1. You may feel some dizziness after the procedure so it is recommended that someone take you home.
  2. Pain at the surgical site will be managed with pain medication. You should get up and walk around as soon as you are able to help promote healing and reduce complications.
  3. Wear supportive underwear for one to two weeks after the procedure.
  4. You will receive instructions regarding caring for the incision. A dressing is usually placed for two days, after which you can remove it yourself. Sutures are normally dissolvable and do not need to be removed.
  5. You may return to work after one to two weeks, but avoid lifting heavy objects. Please wait one week before driving.
  6. You may return to more strenuous activities and exercising after four to six weeks.
  7. You may have sexual intercourse as you are comfortable; there are no specific timelines for it.
  • Bleeding that may require additional surgery (rare).
  • Infection.
  • Numbness at the surgical site, which is temporary.
  • Hernia if the patient returns to driving or lifts heavy objects before the specified time.
  • If both testicles were removed, no testosterone will be produced. (Even if one testicle is removed, sometimes that can affect how much testosterone is produced.)
  • Reduced sex drive.
  • If the surgery is performed before puberty, it can affect the patient’s development. (The patient’s voice may not change and hair may not grow under the arms and around the penis.)
  • Swelling or bruising at the surgical site or the scrotum.
  • If you experience any of the following signs of infection, come back and see your doctor immediately:
    • Swelling and redness.
    • Numbness.
    • Throbbing pain.
    • Fever.
    • Discharge from the incision.
  • If you are taking any blood-thinning medication/anticoagulant, please let your doctor know as some may need to be stopped before you travel for the procedure.
  • Travelers to Thailand should plan to stay in the country for at least two to five days after the procedure, depending on their condition after surgery, or for the entire duration of treatment.
  • If you plan to return home after the procedure, please speak to your doctor before making travel arrangements. There are no restrictions for air travel.
  • During your follow-up appointment your medical team will assess your health and your incision and you will receive documents detailing your medical and treatment history and your "Fit to Fly" certificate (if needed).
The success of the procedure depends on a number of factors. Please discuss the likelihood of success with your doctor before the procedure.
What if this procedure is not performed?
If it is left untreated, the cancer may metastasize. Ultimately, metastatic cancer is life-threatening. Please discuss specific risks of not having the procedure done with your doctor.

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