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Cryptorchidism, more commonly known as an undescended testicle, occurs when one or both testicles do not appropriately descend into the scrotum before a child is born. While this condition is generally rare, it is more common in babies who are born prematurely than in their full-term counterparts. Often, it is only one testicle that does not descend; in about one-tenth of the cases, though, both testicles fail to move to their proper place. While this condition commonly corrects itself within the first few months of life, surgery may be required to correct the misplacement. Performing this type of correction on an infant has long-term benefits when compared to waiting until adulthood, including reducing the likelihood of infertility or testicular cancer. Ultimately, if the testicle has not moved into the scrotum within the first four months, it is unlikely it will move on its own.

The most common symptom of cryptorchidism occurs when one does not feel a testicle in the location where it would otherwise be located. This happens because of a disruption in the normal developmental practices that take place in utero. Typically, the testicles move down the inguinal canal from the abdomen to the scrotum; when this movement is stopped or otherwise delayed, the result can be cryptorchidism. It is possible that a child with two appropriately placed testicles might find themselves with symptoms of cryptorchidism; a retractile testicle is one that moves back and forth between the groin and the scrotum; an ascending testicle is one that has moved to the groin and is not easily moved to the scrotum. There are ample risk factors associated with not correcting cryptorchidism, including infertility and testicular cancer, as mentioned, as well as testicular torsion (twisting of the spermatic cord), inguinal hernia, or inadvertent trauma.

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Cryptochidism Research Papers

Research papers on cryptorchidism discuss the medical condition, commonly known as an undescended testicle, that occurs when one or both testicles do not appropriately descend into the scrotum before a child is born.

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