Testicular ultrasound

Specialty of Radiology

What is a testicular ultrasound?

A testicular ultrasound uses high-frequency sound waves to create real-time images of the testicles and surrounding tissue (the scrotum and the associated blood vessels). This is a non-invasive procedure carried out by a radiologist who is able to interpret the images and provide a report for your relevant specialist. 

What does a testicular ultrasound involve?

This is a painless procedure that takes roughly 30 minutes. During the procedure you would lie on the examination table. The technician would then apply a special gel to the scrotum which the transducer is applied to. As the transducer moves across the skin, images of the testicles are produced. No pain is felt, however, there is a slight pressure to the area. 

What is a testicular ultrasound for?

A testicular ultrasound is carried out to determine if there are any abnormalities in the testicles and to diagnose conditions. A doctor would request a testicular ultrasound for the following reasons:

  • To investigate potential causes of infertility.
  • To check for potential causes of testicular pain or swelling.
  • To check for any tumours or cysts in the testicles.
  • To evaluate any potential varioceles.
  • To check for damage caused by trauma or injury. 

How can you prepare for a testicular ultrasound?

No preparation is required for a testicular ultrasound.

What would a “bad” result mean?

Once the images are available, a radiologist would analyse them and provide a report to the specialist.

Abnormal results could suggest the following:

  • a testicular tumour
  • a cyst
  • a variocele (enlarged vein within the testicle)
  • testicular torsion (when the spermatic cord becomes twisted, resulting in restricted blood flow to the testicle)
  • an infection within the testicle
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