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Ask the Medical Expert Archives 2000-2004

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Swollen Testicles
July 2000

Q. What can cause swollen testicles?

A. Swollen testicles, Orchitis, may have several causes; trauma, infection (such as the mumps which is a virus, although most people are immune due to having received the MMR vaccine as an infant), and testicular cancer. Torsion of the testicles is an acutely painful cause where the spermatic cord gets abnormally rotated thus compromising circulation. This would be a medical emergency. Also an infection of the epididymis (epididymitis) can cause painful swelling of the testicles. It can be sexually transmitted, but not necessarily. Hopefully your case is one of the less serious causes. An urologist would be the correct specialist to get this problem evaluated.

Ref: Sex Transm Infect. 1999 Aug;75 Suppl 1:S51-3.

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