When some babies are born it is seen that they have only one testis in their scrotum. The missing testis in such cases is found to be located higher up in the abdomen. In some babies both the testes are found missing as they are located in the tummy. Cryptorchidism is the medical name used to refer this condition. About 4 % of the new born babies are found to have cryptorchidism. Cryptorchidism is usually found in premature babies. 30 % of premature babies are found to be affected by this condition.
Undescended testis is diagnosed during your baby’s routine checks. If your doctor finds that any of the testes are not found in its usual position he may wait till the first birthday of your baby, for it to descend naturally. In some babies the testis may be retractile testis which means the testis keep on moving up and down when you touch or when climatic changes takes place. In such cases the doctor may not suggest any remedial measures.
How undescended testes are formed?
In babies testes descend into its normal position inside the scrotum after around 25 weeks of pregnancy. In some cases the testes gets stuck either in the abdomen or in the groin. The reasons for the abnormal positioning of the testes are not known to medical science. It is expected that some chemical changes in the environment or genetic issues can be the reason for undescended testes.
Problems caused by undescended testis
The problems that accompany undescended testes are detailed below.
If the testis remains inside the body it may increase the temperature of the testis to the body temperature resulting in infertility.
Boys with undescended testis are at high risk of cancer in the future.
The testis may get damaged or injured if they remain in abnormal positions.
This might cause psychological affect on the person concerned and he may be under emotional trauma.
Laparoscopic procedure for correction of undescended testis
Undescended testis can be surgically corrected following a laparoscopic procedure. Laparoscopy helps to find the accurate location and easy mobilization of the testis. Only four small incisions are needed to carry out this surgery. The child will not feel any pain at all on the day after the surgery and he will be discharged from the hospital on the second day after surgery.
Preoperative check up
Before admitting for surgical procedure the child will be examined by a pediatrician to assess his health condition and his fitness to undergo anesthesia.
The child can have normal diet on the day of admission. Pediatric enema will be administered to the child on the previous day and in morning of the surgery day.
Day of surgery
The anesthetist will inform how many hours fasting will be required for carrying out the surgery. Normally this will be six hours. After the surgery the child will be brought to the recovery room where he will be under intensive care. A parent will be allowed to be present with the child in the recovery room.
Post operative care
In the first day after the surgery the child will be allowed to have light diet which can slowly be converted to the normal diet. He will be allowed to move around on the first day itself. On the second day the child will be allowed to go home. The parent and the child will be instructed how to examine the testes regularly and ascertain that they are in their normal condition.