Orchiopexy

Orchiopexy is a pediatric procedure to reposition the testicle into its normal position in the scrotum. Sometimes, the testicle stays inside the abdomen instead of moving down into the scrotum just before or during birth. This is called an undescended testicle. Some full-term male babies are born with an undescended testicle, but there is a slightly higher chance in premature babies. Orchiopexy is often done in children before the age of 2, but it can be performed in older children and adults.

LET YOUR CAREGIVER KNOW ABOUT:

  • Allergies to food or medicine.

  • Medicines taken, including vitamins, herbs, eyedrops, over-the-counter medicines, and creams.

  • Use of steroids (by mouth or creams).

  • Previous problems with anesthetics or numbing medicines.

  • History of bleeding problems or blood clots.

  • Previous surgery.

  • Other health problems, including diabetes and kidney problems.

RISKS AND COMPLICATIONS

  • Reaction to numbing medicines.

  • Damage to surrounding nerves, tissues, or structures.

  • Infection.

  • Blood clots.

  • Bleeding.

  • Scarring.

Laparoscopic procedures may result in less scarring and quicker recovery time compared to open procedures.

BEFORE THE PROCEDURE

  • A physical exam, blood tests, X-rays, and other tests may be performed.

  • Your child's caregiver may discuss the procedure, anesthesia being used, and what to expect after the procedure with you.

  • Clear liquids, such as water, oral rehydration solutions, and juices without pulp, may be okay to drink up to 2 hours before the procedure.

  • Children over 12 months old may be asked to not eat or drink after midnight the night before the procedure. Ask your child's caregiver.

  • Infants less than 12 months old may be formula fed up to 6 hours before the procedure or breastfed up to 4 hours before the procedure.

  • Stay calm and help keep your child calm before the procedure. Pack comfort items for your child.

  • If you are breastfeeding, bring your pumping supplies to the hospital.

  • Follow all other instructions from your caregiver.

PROCEDURE

  • Your child will be given anesthetic medicine through a mask or tube. The medicine will keep your child asleep, relaxed, and free of pain during the procedure.

  • Your child's temperature, heart rate, and blood pressure will be monitored throughout the procedure.

Open Procedure

  • A small cut is made in the groin or abdominal area near the testicle.

  • Any bulging tissue around the testicle is repaired. The health of the testicle is also checked.

  • A second cut is made in the scrotum.

  • The healthy testicle is moved down into the scrotum.

  • All cuts will be closed with dissolvable stitches.

Laparoscopic Procedure

  • Three to four small cuts are made in the abdomen. A thin, lighted tube (laparoscope) is inserted through the cuts.

  • The surgeon views the testicle and surrounding area and performs the procedure with the laparoscope and other instruments.

  • All cuts will be closed with dissolvable stitches.

The procedure takes about 45 minutes. Your child will likely go home the same day as the procedure and return to regular activities soon after.

AFTER THE PROCEDURE

  • Your child will slowly wake up in the recovery room.

  • Your child may be groggy, fussy, or confused. He may feel sick to his stomach and may vomit.

  • The anesthesia will wear off within the hour.

  • When your child feels better, he may be offered a drink or frozen ice pop.

  • Your child will be discharged when his pain is controlled, vitals are fine, and he can keep down liquids.