Testicular torsion is developed when the spermatic cord is twisted. This can hinder the blood flow to your testicles. This condition is very dangerous that it requires immediate medical attention. Within a day, you need to undergo testicular torsion surgery. Otherwise, the tissues in your testicles will be at risk of permanent damage.
What Is Testicular Torsion?
Testicular torsion is a condition that occurs when the spermatic cord, which provides blood to the testicles, is rotated or twisted. It stops the flow of the blood and oftentimes causes swelling and pain. Prolonged testicular torsion can cause the testicles and surrounding tissues to die. Although this is a serious condition, this can be treated if given immediate medical attention.
When Is Testicular Torsion Surgery Performed?
The spermatic cord may be untwisted by hand in a procedure called manual detorsion. But this can be done by your doctor in rare cases. And in case it is done, you still need to undergo surgery to avoid testicular torsion from happening again.
Surgery is performed to restore blood flow to the testicles quickly. If blood is hindered in the testicles for over six hours, this can result in the death of the tissues. Your doctor may then require the removal of the affected testicles.
The twisting can be done from 180 to 720 degrees. Testicles get damaged depending on the degree of twisting that occurred. Generally, testicles can be saved by up to 90 percent if you undergo surgery around 4 to 6 hours. If surgery is done after 12 hours, the success rate is only 50 percent. After 24 hours, the testicles be saved only by 10 percent.
What Are The Side Effects Of Testicular Torsion Surgery?
Testicular torsion surgery should be done immediately to avoid severe complications. Although it can treat testicular torsion, it also has various side effects including:
Almost all surgery makes you prone to infections. Sometimes, this is just a common side-effect of surgery, just like in testicular torsion surgery. Sometimes, surgery does not guarantee that all damaged testicles are removed.
If this happens, then you may be prone to a life-threatening infection called gangrene. Gangrene occurs when tissue in your body dies. This happens when the tissue does not get a sufficient amount of blood. If left untreated, this can make you in shock. And this is considered a medical emergency as it can lead to amputations much worse death.
It is common to experience minor bleeding after surgery. But there are instances when excessive bleeding may occur. This may be due to an injury to a blood vessel. Or maybe it is due to a certain medication.
Despite surgery, the damage has been done to both testicles. And this will most likely result in infertility. If one of the testicles is removed, fertility might not be affected.
The loss of either or both testicles can cause a cosmetic deformity. And this will most likely make you emotionally upset. But, this problem can be addressed by inserting testicular prosthesis.
The removal of testicles can impact the production of hormones in infants. In the future, fertility may be affected since it lowers the sperm count. Your body may also start to yield anti-sperm antibodies that can lessen the movement of your sperm.
How Long Does It Take To Recover From The Surgery?
After surgery, you will most likely experience pain and swelling; that is why you may be recommended to take pain medicine, apply some ice packs in the affected area, and rest for several days.
Within a week, you may use scrotal support to help you recover quickly. You are advised to avoid engaging in strenuous activities within a week or two. After that, you can go back to your normal activities, but you need to start slowly.
After a month or a month and a half, you can resume your sexual activities. Depending on how your body responds to the treatment, you will most likely be fully recovered a month or so after the surgery.
Testicular torsion surgery is needed if your spermatic cord is twisted or tangled. This should be done a few hours after the condition occurs; otherwise, it will lead to a more serious complication. Testicular torsion can make you at risk of infection, cosmetic deformity, and testicular death.
Doctor, author and fitness enthusiast, Ahmed Zayed, MD, is a surgery resident with a passion for helping people live a happy healthy life. He is the author of numerous health-related books and contributor to several medicine, health and wellbeing.