Experiences with surgical management of undescended testis at a tertiary care hospital in north-western Tanzania
Background: Undescended testes (UDT) are prone to a lot of complications but early detection and correction give good results. There is paucity of published data on UDT in our setting. This study describes the clinical presentation, management and outcome of this condition at Bugando Medical Centre (BMC) in northwestern Tanzania
Methods: This was a retrospective study of patients who were admitted and operated for undescended testis at BMC between July 2006 and June 2014.
Results: A total of 84 patients with 102 UDT were studied. Forty-six (54.9%) patients were aged above 5 years. Majority (72.5%) UDT were non-palpable. The right side was involved in 54.8%; left side in 23.8% while 21.4% were bilateral. Associated inguinal hernia was reported in 48 (77.4%) patients. Ultrasonography was performed in 34 (45.9%) patients with non-palpable testes and was used to locate 12(35.3%) testes. Laparoscopy was not used in any patient. At surgery, 54 (52.9%) testes were found in the inguinal canal, 28 (27.5%) in the superficial inguinal pouch, 10 (9.8%) in the abdomen and 10 (9.8%) testes were not found. Out of the 92 (90.2%) visible testes, 69 (75.0%) underwent orchidopexy (single stage in 54 (78.3%) testes and multistage in 15 (21.7%) testes) and 23 (25.0%) orchidectomy. Single stage procedures were more likely in patients less than 5 years, with palpable testes and those with testes located at the superficial inguinal pouch (p < 0.001). Postoperative complications were recorded in 8(9.5%) patients. The overall success rate of treatment was 95.7%. In this study, only 12 (14.3%) patients were available for follow up at 12 months after discharge.
Conclusion: Patients with UDT presented late in our hospital because diagnosis by birth attendants was rarely made even though the anomaly was obvious at birth. The parents, patients themselves and development of complications drew attention to undescended testis. Health awareness campaign, thorough genital examination after birth and regular screening of toddlers for UDT may result in early presentation