Sports Hernia Testicular Pain: Cause and Treatment

Sports Hernia Physical Therapy | Written by Jon Chambers | Updated on 29 December 2021

Sports hernia testicular pain takes a terrible injury and turns it into a complete nightmare. If you begin to feel pain in your testicles, evidence published in the International Sports Physical Therapy Journal confirms you should begin the athletic pubalgia treatment protocol as soon as possible.

Get the ULTIMATE Sports Hernia Master Guide with 30+ included resources, an in-depth rehabilitation program, tips, tricks, and more! Successfully diagnose, treat, and cure your sports hernia with this complete master guide created by a sports hernia specialist. Note that it is still highly recommended to read this article in full to understand how to get the most out of the guide to treat and cure your sports hernia or groin pain.

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What Causes Sports Hernia Testicular Pain?

The best way to answer this question is to review the anatomy of the injury and where pain is coming from in the first place.

A sports hernia (also known as a core muscle injury or Gilmore’s groin) is a weakness on the inside layer of your abdominal wall.

This is referred to as the posterior inguinal wall or posterior lamina of the transversalis fascia.

diagram highlighting weaknesses in the posterior inguinal wall leading to sports hernia testicular pain

In the image above, you can see that the fascia resides on the inside of your body. This thin protective layering can develop tears, which is the crux of the pain you are experiencing.

But what about the pain in your balls?

The inguinal canal which carries the spermatic cord goes through that fascia tissue—if the tissue develops tears and becomes inflamed it can cause abnormal pressure on the cord.

Additionally, the genitofemoral nerve runs down along the psoas major muscle before the genital branch travels down into the inguinal cavity. This nerve can be a cause for pain as well, but most long-term issues with this specific nerve are caused by getting mesh inserted during surgery.

That means if you have already had surgery but still feel sports hernia testicular pain, you need to get that mesh removed as soon as possible!

diagram displaying the genital branch of the genitofemoral nerve

Genital branch of the genitofemoral nerve

Lastly, in a review conducted by Dr. Muschaweck and the Hernia Center of Munich, it was noted that mesh can also cause the testicles to drop in temperature—likely brought on by a negative reaction to the foreign mesh material being placed inside the body.

Treatment for Sports Hernia Testicular Pain

Knowing the cause is great and all, but curing the pain is the main objective.

While many have found success using the rehab protocol, if you reach week six of the 10-week program without finding relief, you will most likely need to resort to surgery.

Receiving the wrong type of surgery is a terrible mistake—and it happens often. Make sure you stay away from mesh and receive the minimal repair technique instead.

While it will take some time to find a specialist who can perform the operation, doing so may be the difference between permanent nagging pain and forgetting it ever happened in the first place.

About the Author

Squatting 500 pounds on an ohio rogue bar with a sports hernia

Jon Chambers

Jon Chambers is a powerlifter, strength coach, sports hernia expert, and writer involved in the strength training community for almost a decade on a mission to create the best strength and fitness guides on the web.