Torsion of the Appendix Testis and Appendix Epididymis

What is torsion of the appendix testis and appendix epididymis?

The appendix testis is a small appendage of normal tissue that is usually located on the upper portion of the testis. The appendix epididymis is a small appendage on the top of the epididymis (a tube-shaped structure connected to the testicle). Torsion of an appendage occurs when this tissue twists.

Torsion of the Appendix Illustration

Since this structure has no function, it does not pose any threat to your child’s health.

Signs and symptoms

Symptoms include scrotal pain, redness and scrotal swelling. Pain is caused when the appendix testis twists and cuts off its own blood supply.

Testing and diagnosis

Our staff in the Division of Urology will make a diagnosis based on a physical examination of your child and history provided by the child or family member. Occasionally, examination of the scrotum reveals what looks like a small “blue dot.” This is the swollen, dying appendage of the testicle.

Treatment

Torsion of an appendage is treated with rest, observation and pain medication. Once this appendage is twisted and the symptoms subside, the problem typically will not recur.

Reviewed by: Division of Urology
Date: May 2011

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