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What do I do if my balls are swollen and painful?

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Guys should take pain in their balls seriously. It’s hard not too, right? You may have orchitis or epididymitis if you have not been in a traumatic accident or had a sports injury. Intermittant ice and ibuprofen will help, but seek medical treatment immediately.

Things to watch out for:


Orchitis is an inflammation of testicle tissue itself. Mumps orchitis, a complication of the childhood viral disease, is the most typical example of complication in childhood; however, about   who get mumps with swelling of the parotid gland will experience an inflammation in one or sometimes both testicles. Approximately a week after the onset of mumps the following symptoms:

  • Pain in the scrotum which will be more severe on walking
  • The scrotum may become hot and swollen
  • Increased body temperature
  • The symptoms usually last for about a week

Orchitis is treated in the following manner:

  • A week’s bed rest
  • Pain on walking can be eased using a suspensory bandage which lifts the sore, swollen scrotum
  • Pain-killers can be used, but antibiotics are not recommended


Inflammation of the epididymis is much more common than orchitis. Epididymitis usually arises as a complication of an urinary system infection, and is usually caused by a bacteria. In the past, gonorrhea was the most common cause of epididymitis. Nowadays, most cases are probably caused by Chlamydia. Nevertheless, in many cases no identifiable organism is found. Symptoms may occur quite suddenly and can include:

  • A rise in body  accompanied by chills
  • A sore swelling of the epididymis
  • Hot, reddish scrotal skin
  • Occasionally, pain in the stomach accompanied by a sick feeling and vomiting

Symptoms of a urinary tract irritation may also be present. These include burning pain when passing urine and an increased need to urinate. The inflammation can involve the testis, which is very painful and may be described as acute epididymo-orchitis

The infection and the symptoms may last for 8-10 days, during which the man should stay in bed and receive antibiotics. After this, the temperature will return to normal, the pain will lessen and the swelling will slowly disappear. However, up to six weeks may pass before the scrotum feels normal again.  If the pain is severe, a doctor may refer the patient to hospital for stronger painkillers or antibiotics by injection. Follow-up investigation of the urinary system is often required if the infection recurs or is associated with urinary symptoms.

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