An Accurate Diagnostic Pathway Helps to Correctly Distinguish Between the Possible Causes of Acute Scrotum.

Roth, Beat; Giannakis, Ioannis; Ricklin, Meret Elisabeth; Thalmann, George; Exadaktylos, Aristomenis Konstantinos (2018). An Accurate Diagnostic Pathway Helps to Correctly Distinguish Between the Possible Causes of Acute Scrotum. Oman medical journal, 33(1), pp. 55-60. Oman Medical Specialty Board 10.5001/omj.2018.10

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Objectives We sought to identify a simplified approach for the rapid differential diagnosis of patients presenting with acute scrotum. Methods A total of 440 patients referred to the emergency department of the University Hospital of Bern, Switzerland, with acute scrotum between 2003 and 2013 were retrospectively analyzed. Simple and multiple binary logistic regression analyses were used to evaluate clinical and laboratory parameters that may help to distinguish between genital/paragenital infection and acute testicular torsion. Results Over half (58.4%; 257/440) of the patients were diagnosed with genital/paragenital infection, 11.8% (52/440) with chronic testicular pain, 9.5% (42/440) with acute testicular torsion, 4.3% (19/440) with a testicular cancer, and 2.5% (11/440) with symptomatic distal ureterolithiasis. In multivariate analysis, a positive Prehn's sign was predictive of testicular torsion, whereas fever, dysuria, high leucocyte counts in blood and/or urine, high blood C-reactive protein, and burning pain were predictive of genital/paragenital infection. Color Doppler ultrasound did not help to distinguish between torsion and infection. Conclusions An accurate diagnostic pathway helps to correctly distinguish between the possible causes of acute scrotum. However, none of the examinations performed could reliably distinguish between acute torsion and other causes of acute scrotum. Therefore, immediate surgical exploration of the testis is mandatory if torsion cannot be ruled out.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


04 Faculty of Medicine > Department of Intensive Care, Emergency Medicine and Anaesthesiology (DINA) > University Emergency Center
04 Faculty of Medicine > Department of Dermatology, Urology, Rheumatology, Nephrology, Osteoporosis (DURN) > Clinic of Urology

UniBE Contributor:

Roth, Beat; Giannakis, Ioannis; Ricklin, Meret; Thalmann, George and Exadaktylos, Aristomenis


600 Technology > 610 Medicine & health




Oman Medical Specialty Board




Laetitia Hayoz

Date Deposited:

03 Jul 2018 11:53

Last Modified:

24 Oct 2019 15:47

Publisher DOI:


PubMed ID:


Uncontrolled Keywords:

Emergencies Scrotum Urology




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