Male Reproductive System Diseases: Traumatic & Non-Traumatic Pathologies
The functions of male reproductive system are to produce, maintain and transport spermatozoids (male reproductive cells) and seminal fluid, to produce and secrete male hormones and to contribute to the perpetuation of the species.
Male genital system has both internal and external structures.
The external structures are: the penis, scrotum and testicles. The internal ones are more adjuvants, and include: the Coweper and prostate glands, seminal vesicles, urethra, deferential and ejaculatory channels.
Among the most common diseases and medical conditions of the male reproductive system are: penile lesions, urethral secretions of the penis, intrascrotal swelling, hematospermia, swollen glands or priapism.
Table of Contents
- 1 Traumatic Pathology
- 2 Non Traumatic Pathology
- 3 Infectious Pathology
- 4 Treatment
- 5 Preparation for Consultation
Due to their location, male genital organs are prone to the risk of occurrence of diverse pathologies, both infectious and traumatic. The most frequent are:
- During sports activities: soccer, cycling;
- During work activities: exposure to irritant chemical substances;
- Due to some trauma from falling.
Genital spasm lesions usually lead to serious pain, which most of the times disappear without leaving sequelae. Minor trauma or uncomplicated diseases don`t require hospitalization, only ambulatory treatment, but serious complications with local swelling, hematoma, bruising or pruritus require urgent medical presentation or more complex treatment.
Non Traumatic Pathology
It`s the most common type of cancer in men with ages between 15 and 35 years. It has been noticed that it occurs around 4 times more often in the white population than in the black population, the reasons for this incidence remaining still unknown. Not only cancer is the diseases that determines changes in the scrotum and testicles, but also formations of benign nature, but it`s recommended to perform a specialty consultation if they occur. When cancer is concerned, the deformities of the scrotal region and the increase in size of the testicles are accompanied by other symptoms, such as discomfort and weight in the scrotum or the lower abdomen, and the occurrence of pain which accentuates to palpation.
They occur usually when there`s a condition of the vessels that irrigate the penis and divided into 2 categories: – Read more!
- Erectile dysfunctions: they represent the impossibility of obtaining and maintaining erection, and in most situations, a poor blood flow to the penis;
- Priapism: A situation in which the penis doesn`t return from its erection state to its basic condition, the episode being rather painful and representing a medical emergency.
It occurs when the testicle and the spermatic cord twist, which leads to the interruption of testicular vascularisation and constitute also a medical emergency. The testicle can also be saved and its whole restored function, if you present to the doctor in the first 4 to 6 hours; otherwise, you risk losing it.
Problems of the Scrotal Area
They include the occurrence of a fluid collection around one or both testicles (hydrocele) or a caliber enlargement by twisting veins from the scrotum. Usually, these are minor issues and which with proper treatment can be solved without sequelae.
Problems Related to the Genital Foreskin
- Phimosis, a situation where the offset is difficult and rather painful, sometimes even impossible due to a tight preload;
- Paraphimosis, the reverse situation; it`s a complication of phimosis, occurred by a forced offset, when the foreskin cannot be restored to its initial position and compresses the balano-preputial shaft.
It`s a congenital abnormality which is characterized by an abnormal opening of the urinary tract, not at the tip of the penis, but in other parts: at the angle of the rooster of the penis with the scrotum, under the gland or right in the middle of the penis.
Cryptorchidism (Undescended Testicles)
It represents the testicular unbobulation through the inguinal canal, from the abdominal cavity to the scrotum. In the fetal period, the testicles are located intraabdominal, where they develop, and while the fetus grows and birth is near, they descend in the scrotum and there are special temperature conditions that ensures the normal function (the process is known as descensus testis and needs to be finalized until birth). Cryptorchidism is an issue that needs to be diagnosed and solved early because it represents a risk factor for the occurrence of testicular cancer.
It happens when an intestinal bite is engaged through the inguinal canal. The exteriorization is obvious in the situations that increase pressure in the abdominal cavity, like sneezing, crying, physical effort or coughing.
Calculus is formed by the precipitation and crystalization of various minerals, like magnesium, phosphorus or calcium. Typical kidney colic is generally produced by mobile calculi, those who remain at the place of formation are often asymptomatic. Renal colic occurs because of the irritation of the nerve endings by the migrating calculus, and is characterized by a continuous and intense pain or aggravation episodes.
It`s a prominent formation, full of caseous secretion which may develop in the scrotum by the obstruction of the sebaceous glands of drainage associated with hair follicles at this level. This will block the sebum excretion which accumulates in the gland`s canal, causing the volume increase.
Infections may affect various regions of the genital area, which include:
- Testicles (orchitis);
- Epidydimis (epididymitis);
- Urethra (urethritis);
- Urinary bladder (cystitis);
- Hair follicles (abscesses);
- The entire genital area (Fournier gangrene).
Genital pruritus (genital itching) may have many causes, such as genital herpes, various mycoses, candidiasis or parasitic infections (scabies). Pruritus may be the first symptom for a sexually transmitted disease. If there possibly was a STD before the onset of pruritus, it`s recommended the total interruption of sexual activity and visiting the doctor for evaluation. The medical evaluation should be made to all sexual partners.
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If a urinary catheter is used to empty the bladder, this must be properly maintained and changed in time to avoid the occurrence of any urinary tract infections, the catheters being seen as gateways for germs.
Home treatment is advised when talking about minor traumatic lesions to relieve pain, swelling and speeding the healing process. This treatment can be applied to non-traumatic pathology as well. However, if the problems is serious, it`s recommended to establish first-aid methods in an initial stage, until proper medical care can be applied.
Home treatment for minor traumatic lesions can include:
- Rest: rest and protecting the traumatized area have the purpose of speeding the healing process and preventing the occurrence of pain avoiding triggering mechanisms.
- Local refrigeration: applying an ice bag is meant to reduce pain and swelling. Refrigeration needs to be performed with caution, never by applying the bag straight on the skin, but rather using a towel (this needs to be added between the skin and ice bag). Also, the bag needs to be kept between 10 – 20 minutes on the same area, and the applications are based on pain intensity and degree of swelling, but it`s recommended minimum 3 applications/day. After 2 or 3 days, that particular area can be warmed up a bit using warm water compresses, if the swelling has disappeared.
- Support: during post-traumatic recovery (especially if the scrotum was damaged) is recommended to avoid boxers and use classical indispensables which can better suspend the scrotum area.
OTC medications are recommended in case of fever or pain, and among the safest and efficient ones are:
- Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications, like aspirin, which are advised to be given along with a gastric protector of the Omeprazole type for any gastric side effects to be avoided. – Click here!
In the case of self-medication, it`s recommended:
- Read the prospectus carefully before self-medicating, especially cautions and side effects;
- Don`t exceed the maximum allowable dose;
- Don`t administer a pharmaceutical product for which you may experience allergies;
- Don`t administer aspirin to person under 20 years old without the doctor`s approval.
Home treatment may have indications for:
- Superficial tegumentary wounds or minor cuts with minimal bleeding;
- Sebaceous cyst (local care after extirpation);
- Local pruritic eruptions of low intensity: they may be determined by contact with irritant chemical substances which may lead to the occurrence of an allergy and contact dermatitis;
- Pruritus caused by genital herpes that is accompanied by the occurrence of some grouped vesicles characteristic in bouquet, small and painful.
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In the case of home treatment, it required special attention to the occurrence of some symptoms as:
- Signs of occurrence or development of a certain infection: swelling, pain, reddening of the specific area, increase of local skin temperature or pos formation;
- Mice (urinary disorders), in terms of number, pain, stinging or color;
- Hypertrophy of the lymph nodes, becoming superficially palpable in the inguinal area;
- Changes in color, size, sensitivity or consistency of the scrotum;
- Experiencing an eruption that remains unchanged or becomes worse, one week after starting the treatment.
Preparation for Consultation
You could help your doctor in a more correct diagnosis, if you have the answers for the following questions prepared, such as:
- What are the main signs and when you experience them?
- Did you ever had similar issues until now and if yes, what were the causes at that time?
- Have you followed a treatment for that particular disease and what symptoms did you had when following the treatment?
- Under what conditions do the current signs improve or worsen?
- (if we are talking about a trauma) how and when did you experienced it?
- Have you ever had such lesions?
- What treatment do you presently follow? What effect does it have?
- Have you had infections or rashes?
- Have you had a sexual behavior that involved risk factors?
- Do you suspect an exposure to STDs?
- Does your partner experience any genital symptoms?
- Did you experienced surgeries of any kind in the genital area?
- What risk factors do you have?
STD treatment is performed only by your doctor, each case having its own particularities. Antibiotic treatment should be avoided before presenting to the doctor. The prescribed treatment for any of the partners should be followed by the other partner only if the doctor outlines this.