Common Conditions Affecting the Testis: Testicular Torsion

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Common Conditions Affecting the Testis: Testicular Torsion

By Dr. Wambugu J. M. MBChB

A big enemy to the hanging buddies and a true surgical emergency. The testis are fixed in a very specific pattern inside the scrotum which prevents them from twisting and turning even in their ‘suspended’ position. Sometimes, this attachment is faulty leaving the pair suspended in a fashion similar to bell knob inside a gong. A condition known as Bell Clapper’s deformity. This puts them at risk of rotating and ‘twisting’ around their axis, with some movements. This twisting causes blockage of blood vessels and impairs blood flow down there, referred to as testicular torsion. Characterized by severe pain of sudden onset, usually on one side of the scrotum, with some degree of swelling and may occur after some rapid movement. Most common in younger men.

Treatment: Warrants immediate surgical attention. Surgery ought to be done within 6-8 hours. Delay my led to death of the affected member. Sad.

Timely treatment involves opening up the scrotum, rotating the affected testis back to normal position, and fixing it there. The unaffected member is also fixed to avoid future torsion, referred to as Orchidopexy. However if surgery is delayed, the affected testis my die, and has to be removed to prevent related complications. Sharp, excruciating pain on one side of the testis? See your doctor. Very fast.

Dr. Wambugu J. M. MBChB, Outspan Hospital

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