The testicles of the baby boy in the womb are located inside the abdomen. After the 14th week of pregnancy, it moves under the abdomen and settles in the testicle bag (scrotum). As the testicles move under the abdomen to settle into the scrotum, the peritoneum (abdominal membrane) takes the shape of a glove finger and helps the testicles reach their place. Between 32.-36. weeks, settling in the scrotum should be completed.
In some babies, this landing may not be complete. If the baby’s testicles are not in their normal place, they may have remained in the groin, they are handled above the scrotum. Sometimes, the testicles may be in the abdomen, or they may not have developed at all. Undescended testicle cases are more common in babies born prematurely. In the infancy, testicles are where they need to be, and as the child grows up, they can stay high as the ligament that connects the testicles to the abdomen does not grow fast enough. For this reason, testicles of boys in kindergarten and primary school age should be checked from time to time. In some children, retractile testicles can be seen, which are sometimes descending to the scrotum, sometimes escaping upwards. This should be followed and if the testicle is outside the scrotum for most of the day, it is necessary to treat it as an undescended testicle.
The undescended testicle can predispose to the development of infertility or cancer. Sometimes an inguinal hernia can also be seen. Undescended testicles should be followed for a while. Most of them descend to the normal place in the first 3 months, some of them between 3-6 months. It is necessary to treat the testicle that does not descend in 6 months. Hormone therapy can be tried as a treatment first, but definitive treatment is surgery. With the operation, the testicle is carried out normally. The surgery should be performed before the child is 1 year old, if possible.
The testicles detected in the groin canal can be lowered into the bag easily thanks to the closed surgery lasting about 30 minutes. In cases where the testicles cannot be found, the location of the testicles is first determined by radiological examinations. Or with the help of the camera, the inside of the abdomen is examined and if the testicle is found in the abdomen, it is tried to be lowered into the bag.
See Also: Pediatric Urology Surgery