12 Possible Causes of Testicular Pain (Orchalgia)

Posted on February 14, 2024 by root

Testicular pain, also known as orchalgia, is a discomfort or pain felt in one or both testicles. The causes of testicular pain can vary, ranging from benign conditions to more serious underlying issues. Understanding the potential triggers for orchalgia is crucial for seeking timely medical attention and appropriate treatment.

1. Trauma or Injury

Blunt trauma or injury to the testicles can lead to severe pain. Accidents, sports injuries or direct blows can cause swelling, bruising and inflammation.

2. Epididymitis

Epididymitis is the inflammation of the epididymis, a coiled tube located at the back of the testicle. It can result from infections, including sexually transmitted infections (STIs) or urinary tract infections (UTIs). Symptoms may include swelling, redness and pain.

3. Testicular Torsion

Testicular torsion is a medical emergency that occurs when the spermatic cord twists, cutting off the blood supply to the testicle. This condition requires immediate attention to prevent permanent damage. Symptoms include sudden and severe testicular pain, swelling and nausea.

4. Varicocele

A varicocele is the enlargement of veins within the scrotum, similar to varicose veins. While it may not always cause pain, some individuals may experience discomfort or a dull ache. Varicoceles are more common on the left side.

5. Hydrocele

A hydrocele occurs when fluid accumulates in the sac around the testicle, causing swelling. While often painless, larger hydroceles can lead to discomfort and heaviness in the scrotum.

6. Inguinal Hernia

An inguinal hernia occurs when part of the intestine protrudes through the abdominal wall into the inguinal canal. This can cause pain and swelling in the testicular area.

7. Kidney Stones

Sometimes, kidney stones can cause referred pain to the testicles. As the stones move through the urinary tract, the pain may radiate to the lower abdomen and testicles.

8. Prostatitis

Inflammation of the prostate, known as prostatitis, can cause pain in the testicles. Prostatitis is often associated with urinary symptoms and discomfort in the pelvic region.

9. Orchitis

Orchitis is the inflammation of the testicles, often caused by viral or bacterial infections. Mumps, a viral infection, is a common cause of orchitis.

10. Referred Pain

Pain from other areas, such as the lower abdomen, groin or spine, can be felt in the testicles. Conditions like herniated discs or nerve compression may contribute to referred pain.

11. Psychological Factors

Stress, anxiety, or psychological factors can sometimes manifest as physical pain. It’s important to consider the influence of mental health on physical symptoms.

12. Cancer

Testicular cancer, while relatively rare, can cause pain or discomfort. Regular testicular self-exams are crucial for detecting any unusual changes.

Individuals experiencing testicular pain should seek prompt medical attention, especially if the pain is sudden, severe, or accompanied by other concerning symptoms. Diagnostic tests, physical examinations, and, if necessary, imaging studies can help determine the underlying cause of orchalgia, leading to appropriate treatment and relief. Early intervention is key to addressing potential serious conditions and ensuring optimal reproductive and overall health. If you have orchalgia and need diagnosis and treatment, contact the office of Justin Houman, MD. Call our clinic in Los Angeles, CA, to schedule an appointment.

Posted on behalf of Justin Houman MD

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