Time to see doc?
December 13, 2012 9:58 AM   Subscribe

YANMD, but is it time to see mine? (Very mildly NSFW/L inside).

How many days of testicular pain before seeing doctor?

I am pretty active in terms of my own healthcare but don't really want to get this checked out if it's nothing. Last night my one testicle started aching, off and on, maybe once every ten minutes it feels like a headache in one testicle only.

Acceptable time to wait for this to go away?
posted by Cosine to Health & Fitness (10 answers total)
On a scale of 1-10 where 10 is the most pain you could ever imagine being in, what number would you assign to this pain?

Is it sharp and "hot" or dull and achey?
posted by royalsong at 10:01 AM on December 13, 2012

Also: Is it the same level of pain each time or is it getting better or worse as time changes?

Did you have any vigorous sex or has anything been in contact with the testicle just prior to the pain?
posted by royalsong at 10:02 AM on December 13, 2012

Go soon. If you have an infection or torsion it's not going to get better on its own. For the price of the indignity of a doctor cupping your nads you can get a proper diagnosis. If you have any swelling or obvious redness on your nutsack I'd definitely go see the doc sooner rather than later.
posted by MuffinMan at 10:04 AM on December 13, 2012 [2 favorites]

I'm active and a distance runner. At some point it became necessary to get very serious about testicular support or face the kind of aching you might be describing. It could be sort of off and on and not all that apparently connected to exercise which is why it took me a while to figure out what was going on. I invested in some compression shorts and haven't had an achy ball in ages.
posted by cmoj at 10:06 AM on December 13, 2012

You should see a doctor whenever you can; a urologist would be best if you don't need a referral for your health plan.

Could be a variety of things, some serious and some not so. Varicocele is the first thing that comes to mind, but again I'm not a doctor - see one soon
posted by NYC-BB at 10:11 AM on December 13, 2012

No swelling.

Pain is a 3/10.

I did have a fairly vigorous gym session two days ago.

Thanks all.
posted by Cosine at 10:30 AM on December 13, 2012

Go see a doctor ASAP. Why risk losing a torsed testicle if you could just get it checked out?
posted by DaveZ at 10:31 AM on December 13, 2012

Give this a shot:
"The testicular self-examination (TSE) is an easy way for guys to check their own testicles to make sure there aren't any unusual lumps or bumps — which can be the first sign of testicular cancer.

Although testicular cancer is rare in teenage guys, overall it is the most common cancer in males between the ages of 15 and 35. It's important to try to do a TSE every month so you can become familiar with the normal size and shape of your testicles, making it easier to tell if something feels different or abnormal in the future.

Here's what to do:
  • It's best to do a TSE during or right after a hot shower or bath. The scrotum (skin that covers the testicles) is most relaxed then, which makes it easier to examine the testicles.
  • Examine one testicle at a time. Use both hands to gently roll each testicle (with slight pressure) between your fingers. Place your thumbs over the top of your testicle, with the index and middle fingers of each hand behind the testicle, and then roll it between your fingers.
  • You should be able to feel the epididymis (the sperm-carrying tube), which feels soft, rope-like, and slightly tender to pressure, and is located at the top of the back part of each testicle. This is a normal lump.
  • Remember that one testicle (usually the right one) is slightly larger than the other for most guys — this is also normal.
  • When examining each testicle, feel for any lumps or bumps along the front or sides. Lumps may be as small as a piece of rice or a pea.
  • If you notice any swelling, lumps, or changes in the size or color of a testicle, or if you have any pain or achy areas in your groin, let your doctor know right away.
  • Lumps or swelling may not be cancer, but they should be checked by your doctor as soon as possible. Testicular cancer is almost always curable if it is caught and treated early."
  • But go to your doctor soon anyway
    posted by Blasdelb at 10:54 AM on December 13, 2012 [1 favorite]

    Do you really want to risk a complication in that part of your anatomy because you didn't want to take the time to see the doc? I would see a doc.
    posted by Silvertree at 11:16 AM on December 13, 2012

    Go now, no reason not to. And definitely start TSEs. I had a scare two years ago and I'm very careful about remembering the exams now.
    posted by WinnipegDragon at 11:38 AM on December 13, 2012

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