Long-term effects of prepubertal testicular vessel ligation on testicular function in the rat

J. A. Pascual, Javier Villanueva-Meyer, J. L. Rutgers, C. A E Lemmi, S. C. Sikka, R. M. Ehrlich, I. Mena, J. Rajfer

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11 Scopus citations


To determine the effects of unilateral testicular vein and artery ligation in the immature rat on the function and final location of the testis at adulthood, 10-day-old male rats underwent either a sham operation or unilateral ligation of these vessels of the still undescended testis. Testicular location, blood flow, size and histology as well as ventral prostate weights were measured 50 days later at adulthood. At age 60 days, it was determined that all testes were descended into the scrotum, and there were no differences in testis and ventral prostate weights, intratesticular sperm counts and mean seminiferous tubular area between the control and sham operated animals. However, there was an 18% reduction in testicular blood flow (ml. per 100 gm. per minute ± standard error of mean) in the operated animals when compared to the sham (20.43 ± 1.10 versus 16.69 ± 0.74, p<0.02). These data indicate that although there is a slight but significant reduction in testicular blood flow at adulthood when the testicular artery and vein are ligated early in life, this diminution is not sufficient to alter the ultimate location, testicular weight and spermatogenic function of the testis. This would suggest that after ligation of the main testicular vessels to the immature testis, the collateral blood supply is able to compensate with time to allow normal growth and development of the testis. These experimental observations provide additional support for the 2-staged approach to the high undescended testis whereby the testicular vessels are initially ligated and a subsequent procedure is performed to place the undescended testis into the scrotum.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)466-468
Number of pages3
JournalJournal of Urology
Issue number2 II
StatePublished - Jan 1 1990
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Urology


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