What Is a Testicular Ultrasound?

A testicular ultrasound uses high-frequency sound waves to produce images of your testicles and the tissue around them. It can take detailed pictures of your scrotum, testicles, and their blood vessels. Doctors also call this test a “scrotal ultrasound.”

Your doctor might order this test if you have pain or swelling, or if you have a mass in your scrotum. Images from the test will help him detect patterns that might indicate cancer. They can also reveal whether you have a cyst (fluid-filled sac), turmo or torsion. An ultrasound can also be used to diagnose testicular cancer or problems with blood flow in the scrotum.

What Happens During the Test?

You’ll have the procedure in your doctor’s office or clinic. It’s painless and should take about 30. 

You’ll lie flat on your back on an exam table. A technician will apply a warm, water-based gel to your scrotum. She’ll press a small tool that looks like a wand (it’s called a “transducer”) against your scrotum and move it across your skin. It doesn’t hurt, but you may feel pressure.

Sound waves pass from your skin through the transducer. Images of your testicles will appear on a computer screen. A radiologist will review them after the ultrasound.

You’ll be able to resume your normal activities immediately afterward.

What About My Results?

A radiologist will look at the ultrasound images and send a report to your primary doctor. He’ll call to explain the results to you.

Depending on what your doctor finds, he may order a follow-up exam or additional imaging tests, like an MRI.

If the ultrasound shows you have a solid mass, your doctor may recommend more tests or surgery.

WebMD Medical Reference Reviewed by Sabrina Felson, MD on March 29, 2019

Sources

SOURCES:

University of Washington: “Ultrasound: Scrotal Exam.”

Cleveland Clinic: “Scrotal Ultrasound.”

Urology Care Foundation: ���Scrotum/Testicular Ultrasound.”

The Radiology Society of North America: “Ultrasound -- Scrotum.”

American Cancer Society: “Ultrasound of the Testicles.”

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