Radiological Evidence of Testicular Damage in Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 Infection: A Sonoelastography's Potential Role.
This preliminary study aimed to evaluate the possible damage to the male reproductive system that the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 virus causes by quantitatively measuring and comparing the tissue stiffness of the testis and epididymis with acoustic radiation force impulse sonoelastography in patients who have COVID-19 with a healthy control group. This prospective study was conducted between February and July 2021 with 65 cases. We used sonoelastography to evaluate male patients 18 years or older, who had applied to the urology clinic with nontesticular complaints, and were found to not have any underlying testicular pathology after a clinical-laboratory evaluation. The clinical-laboratory imaging findings and reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction test results of all patients diagnosed with COVID-19 were reviewed from the hospital database. We measured the shear wave velocity values of the epididymis and the testes of 31 proven severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 patients and 34 healthy subjects and compared them with an independent t test. For the patient and control group subjects, the mean age was 37.55 ± 13.08 (23-71) and 40.5 ± 16.25 (18-81) years, respectively. The mean shear wave velocity values of the left-right and bilateral testes and epididymis of the patient group were statistically substantially higher (P ˂ 0.05) than in the control group. In the receiver operating characteristic analysis, when the cutoff values for the bilateral testes and epididymis were determined as 1.39 and 1.64 m/s, respectively, the AUC was 77% to 73.4%, the sensitivity was 87% to 74%, and the specificity was 65% to 62%. Our findings show that testicular and epididymal tissue stiffness increased in patients with COVID-19. We recommend adding sonoelastography to urogenital examinations of male reproductive system in patients who are recovering from COVID-19.
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