Sexpert Q & A: What is Testicular Torsion?

Dear Yvonne, A friend of mine recently shared that he suffered from testicular torsion as an adolescent. I didn't want to seem stupid in not knowing what that is. I am assuming he pulled something... What happend to him? -Rusty

Dear Rusty, Testicular torsion is when the spermatic cord in a male's scrotum twists around one of his testicles, cutting off blood supply to the gonad. It is a very serious condition that may occur as a result of injury to the scrotum or strenuous activity, or for no obvious reason at all.

Symptoms include sudden, severe pain, swelling, tenderness, and enlargement of the harmed testicle. Diagnosis and emergency surgery are required immediately, as waiting for more than 4-6 hours to treat could result in the testicle being damaged or permanently lost. If a male experiences sudden, acute pain in his testicle lasting more than 10 minutes, he should have this attended to immediately. Testicular torsion happens more often to males in their teens.

Dr. Yvonne KristAn Fulbright is a sex educator, relationship expert, columnist and founder of

Sexuality Source Inc.

She is the author of several books including, "Touch Me There! A Hands-On Guide to Your Orgasmic Hot Spots."