Testes are very sensitive structures and slightest trauma can cause lot of pain and distress. The two testicles are situated behind the penis in a bag like skin structure called scrotum. Testicles are the main sex glands in males. Testicles produce sperm and the male hormone testosterone.
Swelling and pain can occur in one or both the testis. There are numerous condition that may cause pain and swelling in testis. Some of them need emergency medical care. Often there are other accompanying symptoms together with swelling and soreness such as vomiting, nausea, fever, pain in abdomen etc.
Treatment may depend on the underlying cause. In most cases anti-inflammatory and antibiotics can reduce pain and swelling. But sometimes surgical intervention may be necessary. Since testicular pain is severe, you should know the first hand methods to alleviate pain at home as well as when to rush to emergency room.
What Causes Testicular Swelling And Pain?
There are several causes for swelling and soreness of testis. Some of them can be treated at home, while there are causes which may require immediate surgery as they may lead to irreparable damage if not treated on time.
- Injury: Testis are very sensitive, a minor injury to the area can result in pain. Depending on the severity of trauma, the pain can be dull aching to severe excruciating pain. Testis is vulnerable to kicks and injury while playing contact sports. Testicular pain and swelling is often seen among cyclists and kick boxers.
- Infection: It is second most common cause for pain and swelling. Inflammation of tube connecting testis and Orchitis, which is swelling of testis, both can occur due to infection. Epididymitis usually occurs in adult males who are sexually active.
- Testicular torsion: Normally testicles are loose and mobile, but they are held by scrotum to prevent extensive movement. But sometimes, the testicles get twisted extensively leading to swelling and pain. One of the reasons is direct injury to testis. In many cases the reason is not known. With torsion the blood supply is cut and the testis can die. Therefore correcting torsion is essential for saving the functionality of testis. If not manipulated manually, surgery may become essential.
- Blue balls (fluid collection): It is a harmless condition but may cause dull aching pain in testis. Many times after sexual arousal, if sperms are not ejaculated, the tube carrying sperms becomes congested. It causes dull aching pain for a while. It is referred as blue balls by some people. The pain remains for short duration.
- Kidney stones: The pain of kidney stones can radiate to testis, however there is no associated swelling.
- Testicular tumor: Usually the condition is painless. However, the testis becomes large sized. It is very hard to touch. Large size may sometimes produce pain.
Home Remedies For Sore And Swollen Testicles
There are some causes that may need urgent medical attention as there is risk of infertility. One such cause is testicular torsion. You have to immediately consult your physician if there is severe, sudden excruciating pain in testis to rule out torsion. Your doctor may manually manipulate it or may advise a surgical repair. In case if the cause is infection, your physician may prescribe antibiotics.
If the injury is minor with dull aching pain or pain due to collection of fluid in testis certain home measure may prove beneficial.
- Ice fomentation will help to reduce pain and swelling. Take few cubes of ice in a towel and place it over the painful testis for 5 minutes intermittently.
- Support the scrotum by wearing a supporter. It prevents too much of testicular movement and thus reduce pain.
- Roll a towel and place it under the scrotum when you lie down. It helps to alleviate pain when you sleep.
- Over the counter pain relievers help to reduce pain. However, if you are allergic to any pain killers, consult your doctor before taking any.
When to consult your doctor:
Consult your doctor or go to emergency room in following circumstances:
- Severe and sudden pain in testis.
- Pain persisting for more than one hour after history of severe trauma.
- If there is associated vomiting, nausea, pain in abdomen. It may be an indication of torsion.
- There is a solid swelling which is not painful.
- If there is accompanying fever.
- Scrotum has become fiery red, warm and tender even to touch of your inner wear.
- If you have mumps and pain in testicles.