I reckon that it was June-ish when I noticed that my right testicle had started to grow. It had been harder for a while already, but I shrugged that off as probably having been -accidentally- kicked in the nuts by my daughter when I was teaching her (some form of) self-defense. As a man, I tend to shrug injuries off more often than not.
The growing continued until it was about twice the normal size and as hard as a golf-ball. Finally, I had 'big balls', well, one at least.
It took me until late October to finally call the doctor's hotline, explaining my ordeal to the receptionist who answered my call. She asked if I was in pain, I answered "Not particularly, but it's annoying when sitting down, especially in the sauna". She apologized that the first available time with our family's physician would be December 2nd. I took it.
During the wait from October till December 2nd, I noticed a decrease in size, and fully expected everything to be fine.
On the morning of December 2nd, I was more concerned whether or not I could wear shorts or if it would be more appropriate to wear long pants; it didn't occur to me to wear underwear, but, at least, I wore sandals instead of going barefoot. I told the doctor the same I had told the receptionist. I dropped my pants on command and she fondled my balls. She took to the phone, and while listening in on her conversation, I noticed the multiple use of the word 'Kiireinen', which, in this case, translates to 'Urgent'. She had scheduled me for an ultra-sound 2 days later.
The fact that it was all urgent, still did not raise any warning signs for me. Busy as a bee, I continued my daily routine and waited annoyingly for an extra 45 minutes in the waiting room for my ultra-sound on December 5th; you know, the day Nelson Mandela passed away. The ultra-sound thingy they use on balls is apparently the same one used on pregnant women, and I can honestly now state that I've seen the inside of my balls. The radiologist did his thing, and after a while explained that he needed a doctor to look at the results and if I could wait a bit longer. It took him about 5 minutes to come back and dismiss me while informing me that my handling doctor would inform me about the result. I took that to mean that our family's physician would contact me in a few days and tell me the good news.
The only news I got were three letters with a request to come to the hospital for a CT scan, to visit a urologist the day after and that I had to go to a laboratory for various blood-tests and provide them with a urine sample at least 2 days prior to the CT scan. At this moment, I still did not hear any warning signs.
I followed the requests to the letter, and -internet nerd that I am- I secured a time for a laboratory in the center of Tampere online, so that I would not have to wait in line or take a change at getting brain-cancer from a lengthy phone-call.
The morning of the CT scan required me to leave earlier than normal as I was requested to be in at 07.50 already, and expected to be there for about 3 hours. With high-speed mobile internet and Netflix in my pocket, I was fully prepared to wait it all out. When I arrived, a male nurse gave me a container of funny-tasting water and a -plastic!- glass, with instructions to drink that during the next hour and a half, and expect to go in for my scan at 09.30.
When the time came for my scan, the doctor, nurse, or whatever, explained that she will insert a needle that is hooked up to a system where she can direct a coloring agent into my bloodstream. She explained that when she inserts the liquid I will feel a warm sensation through my blood, and that I should not be alarmed. She was right. When inserted into my bloodstream I could feel the warming sensation through my veins entering every section of my body, starting on the right side of my head and ending, well, where the crap ends.
When she was done, I was told to drink at least 2 liters of water in addition to what I would normally drink. So that the coloring agent could leave my body via frequent visits to the toilet. Needless to say that I waited in anticipation, and camera in hand, every time I visited the toilet. But I was to be disappointed, it appears that the coloring agent is not of a specific color after being processed by one's urinary system. The day after the CT scan I was scheduled to see a urologist, but that will be a different post.
Why are all 'penis-doctors' female? Because the males ones are all gynecologists.