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Undescended Testicle

What is an Undescended Testicle?

An undescended testicle is a condition where one or both testicles do not descend into the scrotum.

Before birth, the testicles develop inside the male's abdomen. Usually the testicles descend into the scrotum about a month before birth. If the testicle hasn't descended before birth, it often descends without medication within the first few months of birth.

Symptoms of an Undescended Testicle

The only symptom will be the inability to find one or both testicles in the scrotum.

How is an Undescended Testicle Diagnosed?

The doctor can diagnose an undescended testicle by feeling and examining the scrotum.

How Serious is an Undescended Testicle?

An undescended testicle is not too serious if the male is under the age of 2 years. After two years of age, an undescended testicle can lead to a nonfunctioning testicle. (The testicle might not produce sperm). If the undescended testicle does not produce sperm, the other testicle usually produces enough sperm to maintain fertility.

An undescended testicle is more vulnerable to, torsion, infertility and cancer than a normal testicle.

Treatment options for an Undescended Testicle

Treatments are most effective when the patient is between the age of 12 and 18 months. Treatment options include hormones and surgery. Hormones may induce the undescended testicle to descend into the scrotum. Surgery may be needed of the scrotum doesn't descend naturally or if it isn't responsive to hormone treatments.


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