A retractile testicle is likely to descend on its own before or during puberty. If your son has a retractile testicle, your son's doctor will monitor any changes in the testicle's position in annual evaluations to determine if it stays in the scrotum, remains retractile or becomes an ascending testicle.
If the testicle has ascended — no longer movable by hand — or if it's still retractile by age 14, your son's doctor may recommend treatment to move the testicle permanently into the scrotum. Treatments include:
- Surgery. In a surgical procedure (orchiopexy), the surgeon guides the testicle to its proper position in the scrotum and stitches it into place. Follow-up exams are usually recommended. Ask your child's doctor how often he needs to be seen.
- Hormone therapy. Because descent of the testicle is partially regulated by hormones, descent can sometimes be induced with hormone therapy using human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG) injections.
Adolescent boys and men who have had treatments to correct an ascending or retractile testicle should regularly monitor the position of the testicle to ensure it doesn't ascend at a later time.
Oct. 03, 2012
- Barbara Woodward Lips Patient Education Center. Cryptorchidism (undescended testes). Rochester, Minn.: Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research; 2009.
- Cooper CS, et al. Undescended testes (cryptorchidism) in children and adolescents. http://www.uptodate.com/index. Accessed Aug. 20, 2012.
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- Kliegman RM, et al. Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics. 19th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2011. http://www.mdconsult.com/...=978-1-4377-0755-7&sid=1344526854&uniqId=352342035-4#4-u1.0-B978-1-4377-0755-7..00539-X--s0010. Accessed Aug. 20, 2012.
- Wein AJ, et al. Campbell-Walsh Urology. 10th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2012. http://www.mdconsult.com/...n=978-1-4160-6911-9&sid=1344526854&uniqId=352342035-3#4-u1.0-B978-1-4160-6911-9..00132-8--s0050. Accessed. Aug. 20, 2012.
- Agarwal PK, et al. Retractile testis — Is it really a normal variant? Journal of Urology. 2006;175:1496.
- Kramer SA (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Aug. 23, 2012.
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