April 20, 2016
Shares Apps and “Edgy” PSA to Help End Stigma, Reach Men Ages 15-35
Portsmouth, New Hampshire – Portsmouth Regional Hospital is joining the Testicular Cancer Society in recognition of Testicular Cancer Awareness Month this April. The purpose is to educate the public about the disease and its risk factors, and to promote the importance of monthly self-exams for early detection.
Testicular cancer is the leading cancer in men ages 15-35. One out of every 250 men will be diagnosed with testicular cancer. Without early detection, more men will die of testicular cancer than women of breast cancer in the same age group, yet testicular cancer gets far less attention.
“When detected early, testicular cancer has a survival rate greater than 95 percent, but later detection greatly decreases both treatment options and favorable patient outcomes. This is why early detection is so important. A monthly self-exam can very literally save a young man’s life,” said Wilhelmina Cabalona, MD, a Hematologist and Oncologist at Portsmouth Regional Hospital.
The Testicular Cancer Society has created a “Ball Checker” app available for both iPhones and Androids. The app provides self-exam instructions and reminders. “If you detect a lump, swelling, tenderness, or pain during a self-exam, make an appointment to see your regular provider to get checked out, or call the Consult-A-Nurse® hotline anytime,” recommends Cabalona. Consult-A-Nurse, a free service offered by Portsmouth Regional Hospital, provides physician referrals and health information day or night at 888-421-1080.
Another organization that has had great success in raising awareness with men in the highest risk groups is the Testicular Cancer Awareness Foundation, which released a public service announcement (PSA) earlier this year featuring actor Ryan Reynolds in his Deadpool role. “It’s an edgy way to reach out and engage guys in the self-exams that lead to early detection. Whatever works! The stigma needs to go away so we can catch more of these cancers earlier,” said Cabalona. The official PSA link has more than 2.2 million views on YouTube to date.