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Acute Idiopathic Scrotal Edema

Last updated April 3, 2018

Approved by: Krish Tangella MD, MBA, FCAP

Acute Idiopathic Scrotal Edema (AISE) is a self-limiting condition that generally affects boys, less than 10 years old.


What are the other Names for this Condition? (Also known as/Synonyms)

  • AISE (Acute Idiopathic Scrotal Edema)

What is Acute Idiopathic Scrotal Edema? (Definition/Background Information)

  • Acute Idiopathic Scrotal Edema (AISE) is a self-limiting condition that generally affects boys, less than 10 years old
  • The condition causes swelling and redness of the scrotum (the bag-like structure housing the testes) and may be painful, leading to considerable anxiety for the parents
  • No causative factors or risk factors have been established currently for Acute Idiopathic Scrotal Edema
  • Supportive treatment may be provided to decrease scrotal swelling and pain (if present). Surgical procedures are not required to address the condition
  • The prognosis of Acute Idiopathic Scrotal Edema is excellent. The condition resolves on its own after a period of time, normally in about 4 days

Who gets Acute Idiopathic Scrotal Edema? (Age and Sex Distribution)

  • Acute Idiopathic Scrotal Edema is generally observed in young boys, usually less than 10 years old. However, older children and adults may also be affected
  • The condition can occur worldwide and no geographical preference is seen
  • Boys of all racial and ethnic background may be affected

What are the Risk Factors for Acute Idiopathic Scrotal Edema? (Predisposing Factors)

  • The risk factors for Acute Idiopathic Scrotal Edema are unknown

It is important to note that having a risk factor does not mean that one will get the condition. A risk factor increases ones chances of getting a condition compared to an individual without the risk factors. Some risk factors are more important than others.

Also, not having a risk factor does not mean that an individual will not get the condition. It is always important to discuss the effect of risk factors with your healthcare provider.

What are the Causes of Acute Idiopathic Scrotal Edema? (Etiology)

  • The exact cause of development of Acute Idiopathic Scrotal Edema is unknown
  • It is not an infection and is non-contagious

What are the Signs and Symptoms of Acute Idiopathic Scrotal Edema?

The signs and symptoms of Acute Idiopathic Scrotal Edema may include:

  • Swelling of the scrotum with fluid accumulation, which mostly affects unilateral scrotal skin (in 90% of the cases)
  • In about 10% of the cases, it affects both sides (the left and right side) of the scrotum
  • There may be an associated redness of the scrotum, the skin may be hard or thickened
  • The condition may cause pain in some boys

How is Acute Idiopathic Scrotal Edema Diagnosed?

The following diagnostic methods may be used in Acute Idiopathic Scrotal Edema:

  • A thorough physical examination and a complete medical history is important
  • Scrotal ultrasound will reveal thickened skin
  • Urine culture, urine analysis, and complete blood count (CBC) may be performed to rule out any infection
  • A differential diagnosis may include acute skin infection (cellulitis) and testicular torsion

Note: It is important to establish a diagnosis; a misdiagnosis may result in unnecessary surgery.

Many clinical conditions may have similar signs and symptoms. Your healthcare provider may perform additional tests to rule out other clinical conditions to arrive at a definitive diagnosis.

What are the possible Complications of Acute Idiopathic Scrotal Edema?

Acute Idiopathic Scrotal Edema does not cause any significant complications. However, parents and the affected child may be under severe stress, anxiety, and discomfort.

How is Acute Idiopathic Scrotal Edema Treated?

In a majority of cases, no treatment is required for Acute Idiopathic Scrotal Edema (AISE), since it is a self-limiting condition.

  • The healthcare provider may prescribe medications to reduce the swelling of the scrotum and associated pain
  • Surgery is not recommended for AISE
  • Parents may be provided reassurance and emotional support

How can Acute Idiopathic Scrotal Edema be Prevented?

Currently, there are no specific methods or guidelines to prevent Acute Idiopathic Scrotal Edema.

What is the Prognosis of Acute Idiopathic Scrotal Edema? (Outcomes/Resolutions)

Acute Idiopathic Scrotal Edema is a condition that resolves spontaneously on its own, within a period of 1-4 days, without treatment. It has an excellent prognosis.

Additional and Relevant Useful Information for Acute Idiopathic Scrotal Edema:

The following DoveMed website link is a useful resource for additional information:

https://www.dovemed.com/healthy-living/sexual-health/

What are some Useful Resources for Additional Information?


References and Information Sources used for the Article:


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Reviewed and Approved by a member of the DoveMed Editorial Board
First uploaded: Oct. 11, 2015
Last updated: April 3, 2018