Chocolate redesign stymies British testicle measurements

Michael sez, "According to this splendid article in the British Medical Journal, the recent redesign of two popular British chocolate snacks has disrupted a simple, affordable teaching method used to assess 'testicular volume' in pubescent boys."

We previously reported that two chocolates — Teasers and Truffles — were strikingly similar to the 8 ml bead of the orchidometer used to assess testicular volume. We therefore suggested that they could be used to stage puberty in males and, because of their wide availability and low cost, commended their use.

We were recently dismayed to discover that the manufacturer has changed the shape of both these chocolates. Both are now flat bottomed, and even non-specialists will notice that they bear little resemblance to testes. More disturbingly, they are no longer much use for assessing testicular volume. Only one of six paediatric endocrine specialists (comprising trainees, consultants, and specialist nurses) felt confident that they could use the new Teasers or Truffles to gauge testicular volume relative to the 8 ml cut-off which indicates that puberty is proceeding satisfactorily.


(Thanks, Michael!)