Testicular pain could be a rare sign of coronavirus, doctors say.
It comes after a 49-year-old man in Turkey tested positive for Covid-19 with no other symptoms.
The patient sought medical advice because of swelling and pain in the left side of his groin and testicles in the summer.
He had none of the known symptoms of the virus, such as a persistent cough, high temperature, and loss or change of taste or smell.
But doctors decided to take it for the disease because he had been in contact with someone who later tested positive.
The results showed he had Covid-19 and doctors suspected his testicular pain was his first symptom. They said he had no other health problems that could have caused the pain and that he did not have an STI.
Doctors who reported the “unusual case” in a medical journal said it shows how the coronavirus can affect people in a different way.
It’s not clear how many men suffer this particular pain as a symptom of the virus, but a small study in China suggested it could occur as often as one in five.
Scientists are concerned that the virus could enter the testicles, where sperm is produced, and cause “long-term damage”. But there is so far little concrete evidence that this is happening.
The case was reported in the medical journal Urology Case Reports by doctors at Acıbadem Mehmet Ali Aydinlar University in Istanbul.
Dr. Hakan Özveri said the man’s testicular pain appeared to be the “first clinical sign of Covid-19”.
After a few hours, it got more severe and spread further to his stomach.
Dr. Özveri and his team wrote: “Covid-19 is a viral infection that primarily affects (the) respiratory organs.
But as in our case, patients can show different symptoms in organs other than the lungs, such as in the genitals.
“Patients with isolated genital symptoms such as testicular / spermatic cord pain and discomfort without other systemic symptoms should be closely monitored for Covid-19.”
It is not clear how common the problem is, as no large-scale studies have been conducted in both mild and severely ill Covid-19 patients.