Groin pain affects men more often then you would have thought. Usually, the pain is dull aching and continuous but many times it can be a severe pulling or stretching type of pain that may arise suddenly without any warning and disturb your entire schedule. Whatever be the presentation, groin pain can have serious consequences. At Urocentre we have a huge patient load of groin pain and here are the five most common causes of groin pain that I encounter as a Men's Health Specialist:
1. Neuropathic pain:
Many of my groin pain patients are Gym freaks who do unguided workouts. Many of these men have a backache and their groin pain is localized in the back of the scrotum and radiates often to the leg. In such cases, we usually find that the pain arises because of the nerves being pressed in the back. While the patient thinks that there is something wrong with the testicles, the culprit is the nerve and the management is with neuro-relaxants and physiotherapy. We may occasionally need imaging in the form of a Xray or an MRI to better delineate the pain.
Neglected urinary tract infections build their reservoirs in the epididymis, prostate and the testis. Epididymitis is the inflammation of the part just above the testis called the epididymis and is one of the common cause of pain in the groin. This pain is a dull aching sort of pain that may get aggravated by exertion. In some cases, the infection may be tubercular and requires antibiotics for 6 months or more. A thorough physical examination along with some tests can help to point to this cause.
A Varicocele is caused by dilatation of the veins which carry blood from the testis to the heart. Usually, this is secondary to the damage to the valves of these veins. Pain in varicocele usually is more of a feeling of heaviness that increases as the day progresses. Usually, the pain increases with prolonged standing and straining. Usually moderate to severe varicocele can be diagnosed with a physical examination at a doctor's clinic and confirmed with a Doppler study of the scrotum. Treatment for varicocele often involves a surgery which is performed under a microscope and is a daycare surgery with minor complications.
A hernia is the protrusion of the contents of the abdomen through the hernial orifices. In the initial stages before a hernia is fully formed it may compress the ilioinguinal nerve as the contents try to come out of the hernial rings. Pain is usually dull and more of coughing and straining. This diagnosis is again confirmed by physical examination by an expert. Hernias are usually managed with surgeries but impending hernias may be prevented with precautions and exercise.
5. Hyperactive Cremaster: Our testicular vessels and nerves are surrounded by a muscle called Cremaster muscle to protect them from trauma. Occasionally this muscle may get a spasm or become hyperactive leading to sudden pulling of the Testis. This leads to acute and severe pain, especially during the intimate moments. Usually, the examination does not relevant anything nor does the tests. Only expert opinion matters in such cases.
Apart from these 5 causes there are many other causes of groin pain which are less common such as testicular cancer, trauma, infection of the spermatic cord, referred pain from stones in the ureter, urinary tract infection etc. Groin pain can thus be a matter of great concern and an urgent visit to a specialist is highly recommended.
If you have any special queries write to me and my team will try to help you out as early as possible. Diagnosis of groin pain is the key and professional help from an expert almost always works.