Both babies and boys up to 6 years of age need to be checked for undescended testes. Boys with congenital undescended testes that are diagnosed definitively at 3 months of age and operated on by age 6 to 12 months are likely to have both near-normal fertility and a low cancer risk. School-aged boys who develop acquired undescended testes usually need an operation if the testes are unable to remain positioned in the scrotum spontaneously.
Failure of the testis to reach the scrotum by birth affects more than 5% of newborn boys. Premature infants may be born before testicular descent has been completed (about 35 weeks’ gestation) or descent may be slightly delayed until just after birth. If one or both of the testes have not reached the scrotum by three months after normal gestation, the boy can be diagnosed with congenital undescended testis and will need treatment.
Picture credit: © HartPhotography/Dollar Photo Club. Model used for illustrative purposes only.