True cryptorchidism must be distinguished from the retractile testis. A retractile testis is usually descended and resides in the scrotum, but it readily and frequently temporarily enters the inguinal canal. If this occurs during a physical examination, cryp-torchidism may be misdiagnosed. Most retractile testes are believed to function normally, whereas some may be abnormal but less so than cryptorchid testes (100).
Outcome data of fertility after cryptorchidism are compromised if study cohorts include men with retractile testes. Retractile testes may also bias assessments of hormonal treatment of testicular descent. In the cohort reported from the Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh Male Fertility study, men were included in the cryptorchid group only if they had undergone orchiopexy. All males with retractile testes were excluded, including those misdiagnosed as cryptorchid who had descended testes while under general anesthesia.
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