Asia

New Zealand launches balls checking booth for testicular cancer

Testimatic booth Image copyright Testicular Cancer NZ
Image caption If you're too shy to face a doctor, the Testimatic is just the thing for you

Ever thought of getting a health check but worried about having to, well, drop your pants? Meet the Testimatic.

That's a booth to allow New Zealand men to have their testicles checked without having to face a doctor.

Testicular cancer is the number one cancer in young men in Western nations and the booth is being rolled out with fanfare at a big expo in Auckland.

How does it work? Into the booth, down with the pants and a doctor will check you anonymously through a little hole.

The booth is set up at this weekend's Big Boys Toys expo, a huge exhibition catering to all things men stereotypically are supposed to be into.

So that's stuff like cars, gadgets, action sports, barbeque or construction machinery.

Image copyright Reuters
Image caption Have those balls checked or check them yourself

Strolling between all those markers of perceived old school masculinity, you'll run in the Testimatic, labelled as "the world's first auto ball checker".

What you do is muster your courage, step up to the booth, pull a curtain around you and drop your pants.

What then happens is not some fancy high tech screening process - instead, there's a good old urologist sitting in the booth who - through a hole - will have a little feel of your balls.

In a matter of minutes, you'll be good to go again.

Image copyright Testicular Cancer NZ
Image caption Testicular Cancer New Zealand's promo material encourages men to check themselves

The project is in line with Testicular Cancer New Zealand's goal to raise awareness of the illness. The cancer has very high rates of being cured, but it all depends on how early it's diagnosed.

According to Testicular Cancer New Zealand, 90% of cases are cured - if detected at an early stage, the rate is about 99%.

The UK's National Health Service says this form of cancer is the most common form of the disease in men aged between 15 to 45. But it points out that testicular cancer is actually "one of the less common cancers".

"Typical symptoms are a painless swelling or lump in one of the testicles, or any change in shape or texture of the testicles."

About 2,200 men are diagnosed with testicular cancer each year in the UK, the NHS says.

But cancer groups warn that not enough men get regular check-ups and are not aware that they should regularly check themselves.

Cancer Research UK says "testicular cancer is more common in white males than in Asian or black males".

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