How an Undescended Testicle Affects Pregnancy
During pregnancy, testicles migrate from the fetal abdomen to the scrotum, where they eventually settle in an area known as the scrotal sac. Testes that are in the scrotum can become trapped, which makes them more likely to sustain injury during everyday activity. When a testicle is trapped, it becomes difficult to move. Testes that are in the abdomen can be repositioned through laparoscopy or surgery, depending on where they are located.
In addition to increasing the risk of testicular cancer in adulthood, undescended testicles can also be a factor in infertility. A study of children with both undescended testicles found that the boys had a significantly lower fertility rate than the boys with only one undescended testicle. If you are concerned about your child’s fertility, it is best to make an appointment with a doctor.
Undescended testicles usually occur in premature babies, although they can also occur in full-term babies. The diagnosis is usually made by a physical examination. If you are unsure about your child’s condition, your GP may perform a physical exam, or a pediatric urologist may consult with you.
If you notice that your baby has an undescended testicle, make an appointment with your GP or pediatric urologist. If the testicle is in the groin, it may be removed with surgery. A doctor may also recommend treatment to make the testicle move into the scrotum. This will help improve sperm production, and may also help with early cancer detection. If the testicle is in the abdomen, surgery may be needed to move it into the scrotum.
Most infants with undescended testicles have no symptoms. If your child is experiencing pain, the pain can be relieved with paracetamol. Often, the child will feel better after one day. The child should be kept from doing anything strenuous for a few days after surgery. If the child is feeling uncomfortable, a doctor may suggest a change in activities. It may also be beneficial to avoid riding toys for two weeks.
There are many reasons for an undescended testicle. Some are genetic. Other reasons are excess fibrous tissue, and a muscle that will not stretch. In rare cases, a testicle may be impalpable, which means that it can not be located with palpation. A testicular biopsy may also be performed to check for germ cell density. If your child’s testicle does not descend by three to four months, surgery may be needed. It is best to have the surgery performed early. A repaired testicle will allow your child to have proper testing later in life.
Approximately one in 2,500 males develop testicular cancer. This is a much higher risk than in the general population, and the risk is slightly higher in children with undescended testicles. However, the risk of developing cancer is still thought to be low. Surgical treatment of an undescended testicle can make a big difference. The surgery should be done before your child’s second birthday. This may also help protect your child’s fertility.