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What is a Hydrocele?

The build-up of water around a testicle forms a hydrocele. Normally, a hydrocele heals without treatment. But, as it grows in size, it results in pain and swelling in the groin.

What causes a hydrocele to form?

Hydroceles are commonly seen in babies at birth. Usually the fluid is absorbed into the body, but when that doesn’t happen, it forms a hydrocele.

Hydroceles in adults usually form when there is an infection, swelling, injury, trauma or tumours in the testicle.

Symptoms / when to consult your doctor

Hydroceles usually heal on their own within six months of time.

You should see a doctor if you notice:

  • Pain in testicles

  • Swelling and discomfort

  • Feeling of heaviness in the testicle

Why you should see a doctor?

If the hydrocele is not causing you pain and discomfort, you can ignore it and let it heal itself. However, if you experience pain, you should consult a doctor immediately.

Ignoring a painful hydrocele may lead to:

  • Rupture

  • Spontaneous bleeding

  • Severe infection

  • Tumours

How is it diagnosed?

A hydrocele is diagnosed by a simple physical examination by the doctor in which he checks for tenderness and swelling of the testicle. He might also shine a light on the testicle to gauge the amount of fluid in the testicle.

Dietary Restrictions and Precautions

There are no dietary restrictions after the surgery. However, you should not lift weights or do strenuous workouts immediately after surgery. Swimming, sitting in a hot bath etc should also be avoided until the wound heals.

Treatment for Hydrocele

Usually, hydroceles heal by themselves without causing any pain. However, if the hydrocele persists and starts getting painful, you should seek treatment for it. In some cases, the doctor removes the fluid using a needle. But there is a high chance of recurrence in this procedure. A surgery is generally preferred.

Surgery Procedure

The surgery for treating a hydrocele or Hydrocelectomy is a simple 30-minute procedure.

Flow of the procedure:

  • Patient is given general anaesthesia for the procedure

  • The doctor makes a small cut in the groin and drains out all the fluid

  • After that, he seals the canal between the scrotum and abdominal cavity

  • Finally, the hydrocele is removed and the cut is sutured

Recovery Time and Dietary Advice:

  • 1 Day procedure with mild pain

  • Resume normal routine from next day

  • Avoid lifting weights, strenuous workouts and sexual activity for at least 2 weeks

Risks involved in the treatment:

There are very less complications through this laser treatment. Some of the risks may be:

  • allergic or adverse reaction to anaesthesia or other drugs

  • excessive bleeding

  • blood clots

  • infections

  • recurrence of hydrocele