Testicular Torsion

Please note: the information below does not constitute medical advice. If you have any concerns at all, speak to your GP or consultant.

Testicular Torsion about

Testicular torsion is something that 1 in 4000 men under the age of 25 experience every year. It occurs due to the rotation and twisting of the testicle. This causes swelling and eventually cuts off the blood supply to the testicle.

Testicular torsion is an emergency condition and can threaten the life of the organ. It is important that all men are aware of the symptoms of testicular torsion as the earlier it is diagnosed, the more likely it is the testicle can be saved.

At The Urology Foundation, we recognise the importance of testicular health. We fund a number of studies to improve knowledge and clinical practice. In testicular torsion we funded a project grant in 2020 for a ‘Save the Ball’ campaign, which included the development of educational resources on testicular torsion. More information on the campaign is available here. The following video is courtesy of the Save the Ball campaign and is available here.

Testicular Torsion symptoms

Testicular torsion symptoms can be similar to other conditions that affect the testicles, such as infections, but it is important to get checked by a doctor without delay.

Look out for:

  • Sudden onset pain that can be severe in the scrotum and one of your testicles
  • The pain might increase and decrease but on most occasions will not go away completely

Less common but may also be present:

  • Swelling of the scrotum
  • One testicle may appear higher than the other
  • Pain in your belly
  • Nausea and vomiting

Testicular Torsion diagnosis

See a doctor urgently

If there is a sudden pain in your scrotum, call your doctor or get to a hospital as soon as possible. The doctor will listen to you describe your condition, ask about other symptoms and examine your scrotum, testicles, abdomen and groin.

If there is suspicion of testicular torsion you may require emergency surgery to save the testicle. Other tests that can be considered to look for other conditions include Ultrasound and urine or blood tests.

Testicular Torsion treatment

Surgery to fix the testicle

Testicular torsion requires emergency surgery to explore the scrotum, this usually requires a general anaesthetic. If the testicle is untwisted and has not been permanently damaged it may then be fixed on one or both sides.

Surgery to remove the testicle

If the testicle has been twisted for too long and has permanent damage it will need to be removed with a procedure called an orchidectomy. Removing the testicle will not affect your sex life or ability to have children. You may be able to have a prosthesis fitted later on.

Life after testicular torsion

Share your story

If you have experience of testicular torsion, think about sharing your story with us. We want to drive change and put those with experience at the heart of what we do.

Our stories

Campaigning for change in torsion

The Urology Foundation is urging the government to consider the inclusion of education on testicular health and self-examination (including testicular torsion) into the national curriculum. Currently, too many school age boys are losing their testes unnecessarily. We believe it is absolutely vital that the signs and symptoms of testicular torsion are taught in school, at the age that males are most likely to experience it. We hope that the outcome will be less school age boys losing their testes unnecessarily. Get in touch today to find out more.

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