Urological conditions relating to genitalia include erectile dysfunction, circumcision injury, testicular torsion, hernia complications and chronic infections.
Nerve damage leading to erectile dysfunction (ED) are neurogenic in nature. It is thought that between 15 and 25% of people with a severe head injury may suffer from ED. Other conditions which may cause ED include Multiple Sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease and strokes.
If a patient has to have spinal surgery or has suffered a spinal injury, nerve damage is a very real risk and could cause erectile dysfunction.
When circumcision is required, it involves removing part of the skin surrounding the penis. The risks of complications occurring are rare but can include a permanent loss of sensation in the head of the penis, scar tenderness and the need for a further operation to remove more skin.
Testicular torsion occurs when the cord that supplies testicles with blood becomes twisted. It is a medical emergency and sufferers should go to A&E immediately. If testicular torsion is not diagnosed quickly enough the blood supply to the testicle will be cut off causing the testicle to die.
Signs of testicular torsion include sudden pain in one of your testicles, swollen scrotum, vomiting, nausea and abdominal pain. This condition is more commonly found in boys with undescended testicles.
As a foetus, lobes situated at the bottom of boy’s kidneys descend down a tract and into the scrotum to form the testes. Inguinal hernias occur because the tract in which the testes descend, open up and fatty tissue pushes through the hole.
Inguinal hernias are usually treated with surgery and a known complication of a hernia repair include nerve damage, damage to the blood supply to the testicles or damage to the tube which carries sperm to the testicles.
If the decision has been made not to father any more children, a vasectomy may be opted for. It involves an injection into the scrotum and then removing a small piece of the tube which supplies semen. A stitch or cauterization closes the cut ends.
Any surgical procedure carries the risk of infection and a vasectomy is no different. Patients may experience pain at the incision site or around their testes and this is because of the build-up of pressure in sperm that cannot get out. This sensation does subside in time.
Pain however may not be just caused by a build-up of pressure, it could also be caused by sperm granuloma. This is where sperm leaks out of the cut and sealed ends and leaks out into the surrounding tissue. Small nodules are formed and usually in time these nodules naturally resolve themselves. Uncommonly though some nodules do not resolve themselves and a further operation is required to rectify the situation.
In some instances Vasectomies naturally reverse themselves by reconnecting the cut ends. When this happens, the man becomes fertile again. Naturally reversing vasectomies are not a sign of negligence.
During a vasectomy, the surgeon may accidentally cut a ligament causing nerve damage and loss of sensation or damage may occur to the testicles because the surgeon accidentally cut the blood supply. These could indicate that negligence has happened.