How useful is a physical exam in diagnosing testicular torsion?
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Physical exam is useful, but imperfect, in ruling out testicular torsion (strength of recommendation [SOR]: C, expert opinion). The cremasteric reflex or a nontender testicle usually excludes testicular torsion, but case reports have noted the opposite to be true (SOR: C, case series). An abnormal testicular lie can help establish the diagnosis, but occurs in fewer than 50% of cases (SOR: C, case series). Other findings are less reliable (SOR: C, case series). The standard of care for diagnosing testicular torsion relies on studies beyond the physical examination (SOR: C, expert opinion).
Journal of Family Practice, 58(8) 2009: 433-434.
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