Testicular Torsion

What is testicular torsion?

Testicular torsion, sometimes referred to as torsion of the spermatic cord, is a twisting of the spermatic cord that cuts off the blood supply to the testicle. It's a rare condition that can destroy a testicle in as little as four to six hours.

Each testicle is connected to the internal reproductive organs by the spermatic cord, a structure that contains blood vessels, nerves, muscles and a tube for carrying semen. If this cord twists, the blood supply to the testicle is pinched off. Without blood, cells in the testicle will die.

If your son is diagnosed with testicular torsion, Boston Children's Hospital pediatric surgeons will immediately step in to alleviate his condition.

  • Testicular torsion can occur in both newborns and adolescents.
  • It's a rare condition that can destroy a testicle.
  • If you suspect that your son has testicular torsion, seek emergency medical assistance immediately.

How we care for testicular torsion

Boston Children's Hospital researchers are constantly working on better ways to both diagnose and treat this condition. One recent study on newborn testicular torsion done here demonstrated the potential value of scrotal ultrasounds with Doppler imaging, in order to rule out scrotal hematoma, another condition in which the symptoms mimic those of testicular torsion.