Caring for Yourself After Your Orchiectomy

This information explains how to care for yourself after your orchiectomy.

An orchiectomy is a procedure to remove the testicles. It can be done through an incision (surgical cut) in either your scrotum or groin.

Managing Your Discomfort

  • Wear the scrotal support that you were discharged with for 48 hours. It will hold the dressing in place and provide support to make you more comfortable. After 48 hours, wear brief style underwear.
  • For the first 24 hours after your procedure, ice may help with the swelling and bruising. Put an ice pack covered with a cloth inside your scrotal support for 10 minutes. Then, remove it for 10 minutes and repeat as needed. Do not keep the ice pack on for more than 10 minutes at one time.
  • Take the pain medication your healthcare provider prescribed.
  • Do not strain when you have a bowel movement. If needed, take a stool softener such as docusate sodium (Colace®). You can also drink more liquids and eat more foods with fiber.  For more information, please read Food Sources of Fiber. If you are still constipated, call your healthcare provider.
  • You may have some discomfort while sitting the week after your procedure. Try using a donut cushion or pillow. You can purchase one at a medical supply store.
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Showering

Shower 48 hours after your procedure.  Do not take a tub bath or soak your incision in water until your healthcare provider tells you it is safe.

During your shower, clean your incision. Cleaning your incision as instructed will help you heal and prevent infection.


  1. Remove the dressing covering your incision before your shower or while you’re in the shower. You may see slight blood staining on the gauze pad that covers the incision, but it should not be soaked with blood.

  2. Wash your incision gently with soap.

  3. Rinse well using a gentle stream of water.

  4. Pat your incision dry with a clean towel.

  5. Inspect your incision using a hand-held mirror or ask someone to help you. The following side effects are normal and may last for a few days:

    • Slight redness
    • Swelling
    • Tenderness
    • Black-and-blue discoloration
  6. Place a gauze pad over your incision. Do not use tape. The gauze pad will be held in place by your underwear.

  7. Repeat this process daily until you follow-up with your healthcare provider.

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Activity

  • Do not play sports, exercise, jog, run, or lift anything heavier than 10 pounds (4.5 kilograms) for 4 weeks.
  • Ask your healthcare provider when you can drive a car and return to work.
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Follow-up Appointment

Call your healthcare provider to schedule your follow-up appointment. Your nurse will tell you when to make this appointment before you leave the hospital.
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Call Your Healthcare Provider if You:

  • Have increased redness in your groin area.
  • Have increased swelling of your scrotum or groin area, such as if your scrotum becomes bigger than the size of a small orange.
  • Have drainage from your incision, such as increased blood or pus.
  • Have a temperature of 101° F (38.3° C) or higher.
  • Cannot urinate.
  • Have bleeding from your incision that soaks a gauze pad.
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If you have any questions or concerns, talk with a member of your healthcare team. You can reach them Monday through Friday from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm at ____________________. After 5:00 pm, during the weekend, and on holidays, please call____________________. If there’s no number listed, or you’re not sure, call 212-639-2000.
Caring for Yourself After Your Orchiectomy
©2015 Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center - Generated on September 3, 2015