Epididymitis a cause of scrotal pain

Published By Marco Raber, 3 Dec 2017

Never ignore scrotal pain or swelling, which can be caused by a number of conditions. Some of them require immediate treatment to avoid permanent damage.

If scrotal pain is severe, seek emergency treatment. See a doctor if you have discharge from your penis or pain when you urinate.

The Epididymitis is an inflammation of the coiled tube (epididymis) at the back of the testicle that stores and carries sperm from the testicle to the seminal vesicle.

Epididymitis is most often caused by a bacterial infection, including sexually transmitted infections (STIs), such as gonorrhea or chlamydia.


Signs and symptoms of epididymitis might include:

A swollen, red or warm scrotum

Testicle pain and tenderness, usually on one side, that usually comes on gradually

Painful urination or an urgent or frequent need to urinate

Discharge from the penis

Unspecified pain or discomfort in the lower abdomen or pelvic area

Blood in the semen

the fever is uncommon

Chronic epididymitis

Epididymitis that lasts longer than six weeks or that recurs is considered chronic. Symptoms of chronic epididymitis might come on gradually. Sometimes the cause of chronic epididymitis isn't identified.


Causes of epididymitis include:

STIs. Gonorrhea and chlamydia are the most common causes of epididymitis in young, sexually active men.

Other infections. Bacteria from a urinary tract or prostate infection might spread from the infected site to the epididymis. Also, viral infections, such as the mumps virus, can result in epididymitis.

Urine in the epididymis (chemical epididymitis). This condition occurs when urine flows backward into the epididymis, possibly because of heavy lifting or straining.

Trauma. A groin injury can cause epididymitis.

Tuberculosis. Rarely, epididymitis can be caused by tuberculosis infection.

Risk factors

Certain sexual behaviors that can lead to STIs put you at risk of sexually transmitted epididymitis, including having:

Sex with a partner who has an STI

Sex without a condom

A history of STIs

Risk factors for nonsexually transmitted epididymitis include:

History of prostate or urinary tract infections

History of medical procedures that affect the urinary tract, such as insertion of a urinary catheter or scope into the penis

An uncircumcised penis or an anatomical abnormality of the urinary tract

Prostate enlargement, which increases the risk of bladder infections and epididymitis


Complications of epididymitis include:

Puss-filled infection (abscess) in the scrotum

Epididymo-orchitis, if the condition spreads from your epididymis to your testicle

Rarely, reduced fertility


To help protect against STIs that can cause epididymitis practice safer sex.

If you have recurrent urninary tract infections or other risk factors for epididymitis, your doctor might discuss with you other ways of preventing a recurrence.