Scrotal pain can be acute (sudden onset) or chronic (recurring over time), but should be addressed by a doctor and should not be ignored. Acute scrotal pain can be a sign of an emergent situation known as testicular torsion which requires immediate medical attention and intervention.
CAUSES OF SCROTAL PAIN
- Testicular torsion - The spermatic cord becomes twisted, cutting off blood supply to the testicle. The spermatic cord connects the testicle to the reproductive organs and contains blood vessels, muscles and nerves and is the tube that carries sperm. If this cord becomes twisted, blood supply to the testicle will be cut off and can permanently damage the testicle. While not common, testicular torsion causes severe pain and requires immediate medical attention and surgery to repair and untwist the spermatic cord before permanent damage to the testicle is done.
- Epididymitis - This is a bacterial infection of the epididymus, the structure behind the testicle involved in the development of sperm. Treatment is determined by the underlying cause.
- Orchitis -This is an inflammation of the testicle. While surgical intervention is often not necessary, this condition should be evaluated by a urologist.
TREATING SCROTAL PAIN
Your urologist will first determine the cause of your scrotal pain in order to recommend an approrpaite treatment.
For testicular torsion, surgery within four to six hours of the onset of the pain to untwist the spermatic cord is vital to saving the testicle and preserving fertility and function (although fertility can be achieved with one testicle).
For a bacterial infection such as epididymitis, your doctor will prescribe an oral antibiotic to clear up the infection.