Epididymoorchitis differential diagnosis

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Editor-In-Chief: C. Michael Gibson, M.S., M.D. [1]; Associate Editor(s)-in-Chief: Dima Nimri, M.D. [2]Syed Hassan A. Kazmi BSc, MD [3]

Overview

Epididymoorchitis is a major cause of acute scrotum. Other causes of acute scrotum which must be differentiated from epididymoorchitis include testicular torsion and torsion of the testicular appendage.[1][2][3][4]

Differentiating Epididymoorchitis From Other Diseases

Epididymoorchitis is a major cause of acute scrotum. Other causes of acute scrotum which must be differentiated from epididymoorchitis include testicular torsion and torsion of the testicular appendage:[1][2][3][4]

Epididymoorchitis Testicular Torsion Torsion of the Testicular Appendage
Swelling and redness of the scrotum can be present can be present can be present
Location of pain/tenderness Testicles and/or epididymis Testicles Superior pole of the testis
Onset of pain Gradual Sudden N/A
Urinary symptoms Can be present Usually absent Usually absent
Pain with elevation of the testis Usually relieved Usually exacerbated N/A
Cremasteric Reflex Usually present Usually absent Usually present
"Blue dot" sign Absent Absent Can be present and indicates infarction of the testicular appendage
Testicular lie Normal can be high and transverse Normal
Doppler ultrasound findings Normal or increased flow Decreased or absent flow Normal or increased flow

Other Differentials

Epididymoorchitis should be differentiated from other conditions presenting with scrotal pain or lower abdominal pain, fever, nausea and vomiting. The differentials include the following:[5][6][7][8][9][10][11][12][13][14][15][16][17][18][19][20][21][22][23][24][25][26][27][28][29][30][31][32][33][34][35][36][37][38]

Category Disease History Signs and Symptoms Physical Examination Laboratory abnormalities
Nausea/vomiting Hematuria Location of pain Fever Tachycardia Hypotension Hypertension Anorexia Constipation Rebound abdominal tenderness Urinary frequency/Urgency/Dysuria Costovetebral angle tenderness Pelvic Examination Rectal Examination Complete Blood Count (CBC) Urinalysis BUN Creatinine Stone analysis Urine Beta- hCG Abnormal Liver Function Tests (LFTs) Serum Amylase/Lipase Abdominal/Pelvic CT scan Serum Parathyroid hormone levels (PTH)

Renal Pathology

Nephrolithiasis + + - + - - +/- - - + - - - - - - -
  • Non-contrast CT scan may show stone as radiolucency
+/-
Pyelonephritis + + (microscopic) + + + - +/- - + + + - - - - -
  • Globaly decreased contrast uptake
  •  Foci from abscess pockets
-
Renal infarct + + + + - + - - - - - - - - - -
Renal papillary necrosis - + (microscopic) + +/- - + - - - + - - - - - - - -
Renal cell carcinoma + + (microscopic) - - - + + +/- - - - - -
  • Anemia
- - - -
  • Non-contrast CT:
  • Contrast-enhanced:
    • Homogenous (small lesions) to irregular (large lesions) contrast enhancement
-
Uretral stricture - +/- - - - - - - - - + - - - - - - - - - - -

Prostate Pathology

Prostatitis - + + + - - - - - + - - - - - - - - -
Prostatic cancer - + - - - - - + - - + - - - - - - - -

Testicular Pathology

Testicular torsion + - - + - - +/- - - +/- - - - - - - - - - - -
Orchitis + - + + - - - - - +/- - - - - - - - - - -

Abdominal Pathology

Cholecystitis + - + + - - + - - - - - - - - - - + +/-
  • Gallbladder distention
  • Wall thickening
  • Mucosal hyperenhancement,
  • Pericholecystic fat stranding or fluid
  • Gallstones
-
Appendicitis + - + + - - + - + +/- - - -
  • Leukocytosis
- - - - - - + (if perforation) -
Diverticulitis + - + + - - + + - - - - - - - - - - + (if perforation)
  • Colonic wall thickening (wall thickness is greater than 3 mm on the short axis of the lumen)
  • Pericolic fat stranding
-
Abdominal aortic aneurysm - - - + + - - - + (if rupture) - - - - - - - - - - - -
  • Ultrasound more sensitive than CT scan
  • CT scan may accurately predict the aneurysmal size
  • Helical CT has faster scanning time (30 to 60 seconds) and the ability to obtain all images in one breath hold
-
Portal vein thrombosis + - + + + - + - + (if bowel ischemia or infarction-secondary to extension of thrombus to superior mesenteric vein) - - - - - - - - + + (if bowel infarction, perforation)
  • On non-contrast CT:
    • Hyperdense thrombus
  • On contrast CT
    • Non-enhancing defect of bland thrombus
    • Tumor thrombus exhibits enhancement
Duodenal ulcer + - + + + - - - + (if perforation) - - - - - - - + (if bowel perforation) -
Ischemic colitis + - + + + (if necrosis and sepsis) + + + + (if transmural necrosis) - - - - - - - + (if bowel perforation) -

References

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