Why Getting Kicked in the Balls Causes Pain in the Abdomen

kicked in the ballsToday I found out why getting kicked in the balls hurts in the abdomen, not just the region that was actually impacted.

Testes originally form in the abdomen near the stomach and kidneys.  The  nerves and blood vessels remain attached in that region, even after the balls drop. So when a guy gets kicked in the balls or otherwise has his nuts squished, the pain involved travels up from each testicle into the abdominal cavity, via the spermatic plexus, which is the primary nerve of each testicle, and then to the spine.

In addition to the pain in the stomach area, many men also experience severe nausea.  This is thought to be caused by a huge rush of sympathetic nervous system discharge.   So the body’s tolerance level for that rush determines whether that person will be someone susceptible to actually vomiting when kicked in the nuts.

So bottom line, getting kicked in the balls = severe pain in testicles + severe abdominal pain + quite a bit of nausea and possible vomiting. Good times.

Bonus Facts:

  • The testes of the Right whale are the largest of any animal, each weighing around 500 kg (1,100 lb).
  • Getting kicked or hit in the balls can actual damage a man’s reproductive abilities.  Further, if the force is severe enough, possibly requiring removal the testicle(s) itself.  This, in turn, can cause other significant medical problems, especially if both need removed.
  • In many places of the world, it is actually considered sexual assault to kick a man in the testicles intentionally in non-self defense situations, due to the above potential medical problems that can result in such an act.
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