What STIs cause epididymitis?

Published December 22 2023 inSexual Health
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Epididymitis, a condition that affects the epididymis—small, coiled tubes located behind each testicle—can be a source of concern for many men.

While it may have many causes, including urinary tract infections and other non-sexually transmitted infections, some sexually transmitted infections (STIs) can also lead to epididymitis.

In this blog post, we’ll explore which STIs are commonly associated with epididymitis and discuss symptoms, treatment, and prevention measures. It’s essential to remember that a diagnosis is not a reason to panic; with the right information and medical care, epididymitis can be effectively managed.

Common STIs linked to epididymitis

Certain sexually transmitted infections (STIs) can cause epididymitis.


Chlamydia is one of the most common STIs worldwide. This bacterial infection can lead to epididymitis in certain instances. The bacteria responsible for Chlamydia can ascend from the urethra into the epididymis, causing inflammation and discomfort in the affected area.


Gonorrhoea is another bacterial STI that can cause epididymitis. Similar to Chlamydia, the infection can travel to the epididymis through the male reproductive system, causing pain and swelling.


While Syphilis usually presents with a wide range of symptoms, it can lead to complications in various parts of the body, including the testicles.

In secondary Syphilis, bacteria can spread throughout the body via the bloodstream, and it may infect various tissues and organs, including the epididymis, leading to inflammation.

Recognising symptoms

The symptoms of epididymitis can vary in severity and may include:

  1. Testicular pain: Pain in one or both testicles is a common symptom of epididymitis. The pain can range from mild discomfort to severe, sharp pain.
  2. Swelling and tenderness: The affected testicle may become swollen and tender to the touch.
  3. Redness and warmth: The skin of the scrotum may appear red and warm to the touch in the area of the affected testicle.
  4. Pain or discomfort in the groin area: Some men with epididymitis may experience pain or discomfort in the lower abdomen or groin region.
  5. Painful urination: In some cases, epididymitis can be associated with painful or burning urination, which may be due to the underlying infection.
  6. Fever and chills: If the infection causing epididymitis is severe or if it spreads, you may experience systemic symptoms such as fever and chills.
  7. Discharge from the penis: In cases where the epididymitis is caused by a sexually transmitted infection like Chlamydia or Gonorrhoea, there may be discharge from the penis.

It’s important to note that the severity and combination of symptoms can vary from person to person.

Seeking diagnosis and treatment

If you experience any of the symptoms mentioned above, it’s crucial to seek medical attention promptly. A healthcare provider will typically perform a physical examination, review your medical history, and may request urine or blood tests to identify the specific cause of epididymitis.

Treatment for epididymitis usually involves antibiotics to target the underlying infection. Depending on the severity of the condition and its cause, your doctor will prescribe the most appropriate medication.

Preventive measures

The best approach to epididymitis due to STIs is prevention. Here are some steps you can take to protect yourself:

Safe sex

Use condoms consistently and correctly to reduce the risk of contracting STIs.

Regular STI testing

Get tested for STIs regularly, especially if you are sexually active with multiple partners. Early detection and treatment can prevent complications like epididymitis.

Partner communication

Open and honest communication with sexual partners about STIs and sexual health is essential.


For some STIs, such as HPV, vaccines are available that can reduce the risk of infection.

Final thoughts

Epididymitis, while uncomfortable and concerning, can be effectively managed when diagnosed and treated promptly. Remember that early detection and treatment can help prevent complications and promote overall health.

If you think you’ve been exposed to an STI, you should get tested. Call the number above to speak to a dedicated member of Better2Know’s team.


Mike has been delivering world class Sexually Transmitted Infections testing services to Better2Know patients around the world for over ten years. He has written extensively on the subject, including numerous blogs for Better2Know which are designed to demystify the complex intricacies of sexual health testing. Mike wants to help his readers understand the risks they take in their daily sexual lives and provide the information they need when choosing an STI or STD test in a clear, concise and understandable way. Mike is particularly interested in writing about viral STIs like HIV and Hepatitis, as these infections can have a devastating impact on people’s lives if they are not diagnosed quickly. Only through being well informed can you best care for your health, and Mike is passionate about sharing his knowledge and experience to help you and all his readers lead a happier, healthier life.