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Part 4: Keeping Your Child Healthy  >  The A-Z of Childhood Illnesses  >  Undescended Testis

UNDESCENDED TESTIS

Soon after the birth of a male child, both the testes can be felt lying inside the scrotum. Sometimes, the scrotum may appear ‘empty’ on one or both sides. The reason could be varied.

In the foetus, the testes lie inside the abdomen. They come down just before the expected time of delivery. If the baby is born before the expected time, it may take some time before we can feel the testes.

Some testes are called ‘shy’ testes or ‘retractile’ testes. These are normally present in the scrotum but as soon as the scrotum is touched, especially with cold hands, the testes tend to go up into the abdomen, making the scrotum appear empty. Such a testicle does not need any treatment. This child will have a normally functioning testicle.

If one or both testes are really missing from the scrotum, we wait until the child is 1 year old. If after that, it cannot be felt on one or both sides, it is advisable to see a surgeon, preferably a paediatric surgeon. If the surgeon is convinced that it is undescended, surgery will be advised to bring it down and to fix it into the scrotum. Although some surgeons believe in postponing the surgery till the age of 2 or 3 years, paediatric surgeon Dr. Jyotsna Kirtane believes it advisable to operate at 6 months, because electron microscope studies have revealed that the undescended testis may undergo degenerative changes after 6 months.

If both the testes are not felt, and the clinical examination reveals some doubt, the doctor may ask for a test to determine the sex of the child.

There are two possible risks involved in leaving the testes inside the abdomen. The first is degeneration and infertility, and the other is the development of cancer of the testes.

Here a passing reference may be made about uneven testes in an adolescent. Assure your teenage that it is quite normal for one testis to be lower than the other.

Children with undescended testes may have an associated hernia, which is seen as a swelling coming up in the groin whenever the child cries or strains. In such cases, it is advisable to operate on the undescended testis as early as possible, because hernia in a small infant tends to get obstructed.




7 March, 2016

 
Part 4
The A-Z of Childhood Illnesses


Abdominal Pain
Abrasions or Scratches
Acute Glomerulonephritis
Acute Nephritis
Acute Watery Diarrhoea
Addictions
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AIDS
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Tuberculosis (TB)
Typhoid
Umbilical Problems
Undescended Testis
Urinary Infection
Vaginal Discharge
Vomiting
Wheezing
Whooping Cough (Pertusis)



Part 4
Keeping Your Child Healthy
Choosing A Paediatrician
Proper Use of Medicines
Home Remedies
A First Aid Kit
The A-Z of Childhood Illnesses
Psychological Concerns
Managing A Hospital Stay
Emergencies
Prayer And Your Child's Health
The Role of Nature Cure
Homoeopathy
Ayurveda and Child Care
Congenital Heart Disease FAQ
 
Guide to Child Care
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1 Pregnancy, Childbirth ...
2 The Growing Years
3 Feeding Infants, ...
4 Keeping Your Child Healthy
5 Keeping Your Child Happy
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