Testicular torsion is when the testicle twists in the scrotum, which reduces the blood flow to the testicle. The testicles are in a sac of loose skin, called the scrotum or scrotal sac, which is below and behind the penis. The testicles and scrotum are part of the male reproductive organs.
Testicular torsion in a new born baby means that the condition is found at birth or within the first few weeks of a baby’s life. It is a rare condition in newborn boys.
Testicular torsion can happen at any age but is more common at birth and during early teen years.
Late in pregnancy, your baby boy’s testicles move from low in his belly where they developed into his scrotum. Sometimes his testicles do not move down, or just one moves into the scrotum. Sometimes, the testicle twists as it moves, which reduces or cuts off the blood supply to the testicle.
In an older boy, the testicle can twist if the spermatic cord, which holds the testicle in place, is too long. When the testicle twists, it causes the spermatic cord and blood vessels to twist. The twist causes reduced blood to the area, and the testicle can be damaged badly unless your child gets quick treatment.
The twisting can happen while exercising, sleeping, masturbating, having sexual activity, standing, or walking.
In a newborn boy, the testicular torsion may be diagnosed when the baby is born. Torsion can occur in the first weeks after birth also.
Boys have a greater risk of testicular torsion at the time of puberty. The most common symptom is sudden pain on one side of the scrotum.
Symptoms may also include:
Your baby’s healthcare provider will examine your baby at birth and at your regular office visits after birth.
For your older child, his healthcare provider will ask about his symptoms and medical history and examine him. Tests may include:
In a newborn baby, the testicle usually has to be removed because of the risk of infection.
Your older child will need surgery even if the emergency healthcare provider is able to untwist the testicle.
Your child’s healthcare provider will check your child’s other testicle also. Your child’s healthcare provider will use stitches to hold the other testicle in place to prevent it from twisting.