Canis ISSN: 2398-2942

Testicle: cryptorchidism

Contributor(s): Daniel Smeak

Introduction

  • Cause: heritable failure of normal testicular descent.
  • Incidence: 1-15% of males.
  • Signs: may be none except absence of testicles in scrotum, or signs related to secondary complications of retention.
  • Diagnosis: imaging or indentification at laparotomy.
  • Treatment: bilateral orchidectomy.
  • Prognosis: significantly increased risk of testicular neoplasia, (particularly Sertoli cell tumors).
  • If intra-abdominal, increased risk of testicular torsion.
    Print off the owner factsheet Cryptorchidism in the dog (retained testicle) to give to your client.

Pathogenesis

Etiology

  • Heritable - possibly autosomal recessive gene.
  • Absent or aberrant gubernacular growth leads to failure of testicular descent.

Pathophysiology

  • Sex-linked, autosomal recessive gene.
  • Long-term exposure to normal body temperatures →
    • Degeneration of germinal epithelium and exocrine function.
    • Interstitial and sertoli cells remain functional so endocrine function is nearly normal.

Possible anomalies

  • a) Reversed outgrowth of gubernaculum into abdominal cavity instead of inguinal canal, no testicular migration, remains in high abdominal position.
  • b) Mixed intra-abdominal and inguinal outgrowth, some abdominal migration, testicle closer to inguinal canal.
  • c) Increasing extra-abdominal growth, inguinal or parapenile testicle (more common).
  • Right:Left ratio - 1.8:1.
  • Bilateral/unilateral (more common).
  • Significantly increased risk of testicular neoplasia (especially Sertoli cell) in both testes, even descended one (if unilateral).
  • Intra-abdominal testicular torsion possible Testicle: torsion.

Timecourse

  • Testicular neoplasia occurs at a younger age in cryptorchid testes when compared to scrotal testes.

Diagnosis

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Treatment

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Prevention

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Outcomes

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Further Reading

Publications

Refereed papers

  • Recent references from PubMed and VetMedResource.
  • Yates D, Hayes G, Heffernan M & Beynon R (2003) Incidence of cryptorchidism in dogs and cats. Vet Record 152 (16), 502-504 PubMed.
  • Peña F J et al (1998) Laparascopic surgery in a clinical case of seminoma in a cryptorchid dog. Vet Rec 142 (24), 671-672 PubMed.
  • Kersten W et al (1996) Bilateral cryptorchidism in a dog with persistent cranial testis suspensory ligaments and inverted gubernacula - report of a case with complications for understanding normal and aberrant testis descent. J Anat 189 (Pt 1), 171-176 PubMed.
  • Gimbo A et al (1993) A new, less invasive, laparoscopic-laparatomic technique for the cryptorchiodectomy in the dog. Arach Ital Urol Androl 65 (3), 277-281 PubMed.
  • Ruble R P et al (1993) Congenital abnormalities in immature dogs from a pet store - 253 cases (1987-1988). JAVMA 202 (4), 633-666 VetMedResource.
  • Romagnoli S E (1991) Canine cryptorchidism. Vet Clin North Am Small Anim Pract 21 (3), 533-544 PubMed.

Other sources of information

  • Nelson R W (1996)Disorders of the testes and epididymes.In:Canine and Feline Endocrinology and Reproduction2nd edn. Eds E C Feldman & R W Nelson. Philadephia: R W Saunders. pp 697-710.


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