What are the risk factors for testicular cancer?

Unlike most cancers, testicular cancer does not get more common as you get older.  Most cases occur in men aged between 25 and 45, with very few cases in men over 75.  This type of cancer is most common in white Caucasian males.  Men of other races have a much lower incidence, even when living in the same county.  The only exception to this is the New Zealand Maoris, who have a high rate of testicular cancer.  Within Europe, this cancer is up to five times as common in some northern countries (eg Denmark, Sweden and UK) than in many southern countries (Italy, Spain and Greece).


Babies born with undescended testicles are known to have a 5 to 10 times higher risk of testicular cancer.  There are a few medical conditions, which if present during childhood, also increase the risk. These include an inguinal hernia, mumps infection of the testicles and testicular torsion.   Having a vasectomy does not increase the risk of testicular cancer.