Acute Epididymitis in Boys:: Evidence of a Post-Infectious Etiology


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Abstract

PurposeWe studied the etiology and management of pediatric epididymitis.Material and MethodsWe performed 1-year prospective study in children with epididymitis. All patients underwent an immediate sonographic study of the scrotum. Microbiological studies included throat and urine cultures as well as viral cultures of nasopharyngeal and stool specimens. Serological tests for group A streptococcus and Mycoplasma pneumoniae as well as for enteroviruses, adenoviruses, influenza and parainfluenza viruses in the appropriate seasons were performed in patients and controls.ResultsA total of 44 patients 2 to 14 years old (mean age 9.8 ± 3.2) were studied. Hospital admissions peaked during the summer and winter. The incidence of epididymitis was around 1.2/1,000 boys yearly. One patient had familial Mediterranean fever and another had Henoch-Schonlein purpura. Microbiological studies of the urine, throat, nasopharynx and stool yielded bacterial/viral growth in 9 patients (20.4%). Serological studies revealed significantly elevated titers to certain pathogens in patients with epididymitis compared with controls, including M. pneumoniae (53% vs 20%), enteroviruses (62.5% vs 10%) and adenoviruses (20% vs 0%). Most patients were treated with analgesics and 3 patients received antibiotics intravenously. Systemic and local signs and symptoms resolved gradually in 1 to 7 days.ConclusionsOur results suggest that epididymitis in boys is not rare and it is mostly an inflammatory phenomenon (presumably post-infectious) with a benign course. The treatment of these patients is basically with analgesics with a little role for antibiotics.

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