Cryptorchidism: Undescended Testicle My Experience
Well today (18th July 2012) I have spent the majority of the day at hospital with my little man, for an operation to bring down one of his testes. It’s a routine op for a condition that affects 3-5% of new-born males. Most cases will resolve without treatment, although a small number of boys (0.7%-1%) have testicles that stay undescended into adulthood unless treated. Luckily Charlie was one of the lucky ones and was treated.
In most cases of undescended testicles, something seems to interrupt the descent of one or both testicles, and it (or they) remain inside the abdomen or the inguinal canal. This is where Charlie’s was hiding the inguinal canal.
Charlie’s treatment started with visits to the GP every 3 months. She told us that if it hadn’t descended by itself by the time he was a year; he would be referred to the Urology department at the hospital. Unfortunately it didn’t appear so off to hospital we went. The first appointment consisted of the consultant trying to feel for the testicle.
When he couldn’t find it we were given an appointment to attend an ultrasound scan in hopes of finding out where it was. This showed it to be in the inguinal canal (just above the fatty lump above his willy). This meant he would have to have an operation to bring it down manually.
Hence the visit today. At 7.30am we arrived at hospital and were shown to a private room (very swish). A nurse came and took Charlie’s blood pressure, heart rate, weight and temperature. Then we waited to see the surgical consultant. He arrived and explained to us the procedure; an incision of about an inch would be made into Charlie’s groin in order to push the errant testicle down into the scrotum. Then a pin pricks incision into the scrotal sack to tie the testicle into the sack. OUCH!!
Charlie was taken down to theatre and I was allowed to hold him while the catheter was put into the back of his hand for the anaesthetic to go into. As he fell asleep he smiled at me then I went back to meet Adam. Protective mummy cried like a baby as he was wheeled into the operating room. That must have been the longest hour and half of my life!
We went back down to get my baby and were told that the operation had gone very well. Charlie was very sleepy still and managed to wave at us before falling asleep again. He slept for about an hour and a half and then woke up asking for juice. He drank loads after being nil by mouth since 6.30am and even managed half a packet of quavers. Big, brave boy. He was soon dressed and up and running about, same old Charlie.
I’d definitely recommend getting your little boys looked at if their testicles, either one or even both, haven’t descended by 4 months. Doctors will recommend surgery in order to stop little man becoming infertile and so that when he is older he can check himself as risk of testicular cancer is slightly higher in men with Cryptorchidism. It’s easier to check his bits if it’s in the right place.