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Author Topic: Still Having Testicular Soreness/Pain After 4 Years Post-Op Kidney Donation  (Read 9981 times)

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Offline renin

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I donated my left kidney via laparoscopic surgery to my Dad back in 2013 and immediately after surgery, I noticed my left testicle was in pain. Gradually it has gotten better and I don't notice it that much these days but if I touch or apply pressure to the testicle, the pain and soreness is still quite significant to the point of making me wince. I'm extremely worried that I will have this pain for the rest of my life.

I was told the vein that runs to the left testicle might have been affected during the surgery which may have something to do with this pain/soreness. Has anyone experienced this symptom, even after this long post-op?

Offline Fr Pat

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I donated 15 years ago and did not have that pain at the time. But I sometimes get some pain or sensitivity to pain in the left testicle, but not often or constant. You might want to post your question also at the FaceBook page of Living Donors on Line and also the page of Living Kidney Donors as more donors check in there rather than here these days. there is also, I believe, a FaceBook page for "Kidney Donors with Complications" but I have never used it.
   Fr. Pat

Offline Casey24

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I am just  2 years past my kidney donation. I noticed soon after the donation that my left testicle was slightly bigger than my right. Now 2 years later, it is about twice the size of my right testicle and very sensitive.  Just saw my doctor and it is likely a hydrocele(fluid building up in testicle) that will need to be drained in minor surgery.  Not something I was ever warned about. I do wish there was some current studies on this since this may not be reported as much as it happens.

Offline Dracarys79

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Re: Still Having Testicular Soreness/Pain After 4 Years Post-Op Kidney Donation
« Reply #3 on: September 04, 2017, 01:33:24 PM »
I donated a kidney almost 4 years ago, and I have dealt with a swollen left testicle due to fluid build up. An examination by my doctor, including an MRI-like imaging, revealed just that. I was told not to worry about it, unless I want to have surgery to have the fluid drained.

Offline Brian H

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It appears we are in the same boat.  I also donated my left kidney in 2013 and to this day I continue to have soreness in my left testicle (not fluid build-up nor swelling, just soreness).  Not all the time, mostly just notice it in bed, e.g. when I turn over.  It also doesn't help that my (thankfully small) dog seems to have a special internal radar system tuned to allow him to step directly on it a few times a week.  When I asked my surgeon at the 1-year post-op about it he said "we severed your gonadal vein; of course it's going to be sore".  I was told it wasn't unheard of to feel soreness for even a year or two after but it's now been five.  Guess this is here to stay.
Donated kidney to brother 9/9/2013 at Cleveland Clinic

Offline possum

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Hello.  I donated in late 2008 and immediately had pain in left testicle.  Swelling and prostate symptoms followed. Today, almost 10 years post op, left testicle is swollen up to about 3-4 times normal size.  I am hoping to get in to a urologist here in Houston asap, but long story short, 1) this should be a disclosed risk (left testicle pain or symptoms seem to be very common after donation), and 2) i chose to ignore it but is has gotten worse, i assume fluid draining surgery is in my future.

Offline jamorris67

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I donated a kidney in Oct of 2018 2 weeks after surgery I had a right side testicle with varicocele and hydrococele.  I was told in all pre op consultations that only the vein, artery, and ureter would be compromised,  never once did anyone exam a testicle, or speak of testicular involvement or mention cutting my gonadal vein.  I am now 6 months post op still experiencing painful testicle, painful sex, and swelling,  my right testicle is 3 times bigger than the right, and being told to wear a jock strap I guess for the rest of my life and on my last Doctor visit was that I would most likely have to have it removed to stop the pain and swelling or learn to live with it.  I am mad as hell and seeking lawsuit at this time.  I was never informed of this and I had I of been I would have never agreed to transplant.  Its an outrage. 
jam

Offline MJG

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Instead of starting a new topic, I decided to reply to this as it is what I am experiencing. I donated a left kidney to my Dad, as I was told it was the preferred kidney. After the operation, the side of my left testicle was sore like I had been kicked. It was also swollen. I was told it was normal and would go away. Now, 5 years later, there is still some pain, but the swelling was much worse. The swelling seemed to get worse if I was on my feet or working in the heat. I was told it was a hydrocele and that I also had an inguinal hernia. It was suggested that the hernia was possibly allowing fluid from my abdomen to fill my testicle. I had both operated on at the same time. The next day, my testicle was as large as it had been. I had read it could take a couple of months for the swelling to go down after a hydrocelectomy. Three months later, I am still having swelling that increases depending on my activities. I went back to the surgeon, and he sent me in for another ultrasound. I was told by a nurse my hydrocele had returned an I would need another operation. I questioned this, and questioned why the size changed. She suggested that maybe lymphatic damage had occurred and said she would ask the surgeon. I just got a call back saying all they could do was try the operation again, and if it was lymphatic damage, then there was not much I could do. So I looked up lymphatic damage from kidney donation. Apparently it is common. So getting another hydrocelectomy is taking a chance that it will come right back. I will still have to stay out of work another for 4-6 weeks (I do physical work) not to mention more scar tissue which adds to the swelling. Very discouraging. Not sure how I will move forward on this. If I were about to donate a kidney, I would suggest the right kidney, less chance of long term problems.

Offline Michael

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I'm so sorry you're going through this. Testicular pain is unfortunately pretty common following kidney donation -- studies report rates from 45% to 55% -- but the pain typically doesn't last for most donors. The cause is ligation (closing off) of the gonadal vein during the donation surgery. That can be on the right or the left side. I've not seen research linking lymphatic system issues with living kidney donation but there's a good chance I missed some studies. (It's a common complication for recipients.)

I'm not sure what to say other than it sounds like you're getting professional medical advice, which is important. What I've read is that this kind of issue is handled by a urologist, so hopefully that's the kind of professional you're dealing with.

Thank you for sharing your experience, and please let us know how things go.
Michael
Living Donors Online
Our mission: to improve the living donation experience

Offline Fr Pat

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Dear "MJG". I'm very sorry to hear of your difficulties. I myself did not have that complication. Although I am NOT NOT NOT a medical professional I will just pass along something I have read from past donors. Some donors have had serious problems of continued swelling of the abdomen (not testicle). When it did not resolve itself as it usually does in donors the doctors found that a lymph vessel had been nicked during the surgery, so lymph fluid was constantly leaking into the abdomen. A donor with that problem was told by her doctors that the nicked lymph vessel could repair itself with time if the donor would follow a certain diet. I don't recall what foods had to be added or dropped. With time (weeks) on the diet the leak healed. So IF your problem is caused by leaking lymph fluid (as the nurse suggested) it appears that something MIGHT be done about it through this particular diet. How they would go about verifying that your problem was due to leaking lymph fluid I don't know. In the case described regarding lymph leak into the abdominal cavity they took a sample of the fluid to see if it had lymph fluid. I don't know if that experience is of any use to you, but I pass it along.

Offline MJG

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Re: Still Having Testicular Soreness/Pain After 4 Years Post-Op Kidney Donation
« Reply #10 on: February 25, 2022, 02:15:57 PM »
Thank you both for your replies and information. Sorry I didn’t come back until now. I was told by my urology surgeon there was no way to know if it was lymph fluid, but he said if it was, there was nothing that could be done about it. He said hydrocele repair isn’t always successful and that for second attempts of repairs, he uses a drain. I had the second hydrocelectomy just over a month ago. I was hopeful for the first week, but soon after I started to get the same swelling I was used to dealing with. I believe a new hydrocele has formed, as large or larger than the last. After a long day at work on my feet or even laying in bed reading can cause even more fluids to build up. I have my follow up with the nurse who works with the surgeon this week.

I have also heard of diets that help with lymph issues, low salt and fat maybe. Now I think I need to visit a lymphedema clinic. I have read recently that they can do a dye test to determine if it is a lymph issue. If I had been told this, I might have had this test done before going through another operation and missing work. I donated my kidney almost 8 years ago now. I’m so grateful my Dad is still alive and doing well with my kidney. No doubt though, my life hasn’t been the same with this issue. I’ll keep looking for ways to deal with this.

Offline Michael

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Re: Still Having Testicular Soreness/Pain After 4 Years Post-Op Kidney Donation
« Reply #11 on: February 25, 2022, 06:49:14 PM »
Thanks for the update. I sincerely hope there is a solution and relief for you. I appreciate your willingness to openly share your experience because there are others who have or are going through similar (maybe not identical) issues.

We are here for you as a sounding board, a cheering squad, whatever you need. Please keep us posted on how you progress.

I'm wishing for wellness for you.
Michael
Living Donors Online
Our mission: to improve the living donation experience

 

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