Complications of Hydrocele in Men

complications of hydrocele

From infants to elderly individuals, men of all ages can be affected by hydroceles, which are quite prevalent. The buildup of fluid in the sac enclosing the testicles causes the scrotum to expand, posing a health risk. Despite the fact that they are typically harmless, visible scrotal enlargement can be unpleasant and worrying. Hydroceles mostly fall into two categories:

Communicating Hydrocele:

This kind, which most frequently affects babies, happens when there's a link between the abdomen and the scrotum that permits fluid to build up. As the link closes throughout the first year of life, communicative hydroceles frequently resolve on their own.

Non-communicating Hydrocele:

This kind is more prevalent in older males and boys. It occurs through the accumulation of fluid in the sac, which often happens when the body produces excessive fluid or cannot utilize it. Non-communicating hydroceles can develop gradually and be caused by an injury or inflammation of the scrotum.

While a physical examination is typically the first step in the hydrocele diagnosis of a hydrocele, ultrasonography can be used to confirm the hydrocele diagnosis and check out other potential reasons for scrotal enlargement.

The extent of the swelling, any accompanying symptoms, and the patient's age all influence the available hydrocele treatment.

Signs and Symptoms of Hydrocele in Men

A painless scrotal enlargement is typically the initial symptom of hydrocele. Despite the lump's lack of pain, the scrotal enlargement may make you feel heavy and uncomfortable. Men with hydrocele have a variety of indications and symptoms associated with the buildup of fluid in the scrotum. The following are examples of common signs:

Scrotal Swelling:

Swelling in the scrotum is the main and most obvious symptom of a hydrocele. This swelling can vary in size and is frequently painless.

Discomfort or Pain:

Although hydroceles usually don't hurt, the sheer bulk and weight of the enlarged scrotum can be uncomfortable, particularly if standing or walking for long periods.

Changes in Size:

The hydrocele's size is subject to change; it frequently gets more noticeable when one does abdominal-pressurizing tasks like lifting large things or straining when having a bowel movement.

The feeling of heaviness or dragging in the scrotum: swelling brought on by the collected fluid may provide this feeling.

Complications of Untreated Hydrocele:

Listed below are the complications of hydrocele if not treated.

The hydrocele ruptures:

The amount of fluid that builds up in the scrotum rises with time. Huge fluid quantities have the potential to burst the hydrocele by putting too much pressure on the scrotum. This is among the typical consequences of hydrocele.

Haematocele formation:

Spontaneous bleeding into the sac can result from any kind of trauma or damage to the scrotal area. A hematocele—swelling brought on by a cavity filled with blood—may result from this. Clotting might ensue if the hematocele is not emptied. This hydrocele problem can become quite serious and requires appropriate medical care.

pyocele and infections:

Pyocele may develop if the fluid in the scrotum becomes contaminated. Poisonous fluid buildup in the scrotum is a characteristic of pyoceles. Treatment for pyocele, a hydrocele complication, must be sought quickly to prevent irreversible harm.

Fournier's gangrene risk:

Hydrocel is a potential contributing factor to the disease. In addition to being unpleasant, Fournier's gangrene has the potential to kill nearby tissues. In rare instances, it may potentially pose a threat to life. This is an uncommon hydrocele problem.

Sexual dysfunction:

In many circumstances, hydrocele can be the cause of sexual dysfunction. It is the most typical hydrocele problem. Hydrocele can have negative effects on spermatogenesis, and sperm quality can be reduced. The water trapped in the hydrocele sac can lead to increased temperature of the scrotum.

Irreversible harm to the testicles:

Any scrotal injury can result in increased pressure on the testicles, which can cause them to twist (a condition known as testicular torsion). This hydrocele is an extremely painful and complex ailment that requires emergency medical intervention. If your hydrocele becomes harder, it may indicate that you have testicular torsion, which can permanently harm your testis if left untreated.

Male infertility and shrinkage of the testicles:

Large hydroceles can frequently obstruct blood flow to the testis. This may result in testicular atrophy and, ultimately, male infertility.

By now, you must be aware that hydroceles can result in some extremely significant problems if left untreated.  It's always preferable to prevent than to cure. For this reason, you should continue to be proactive and seek appropriate hydroceles therapy as soon as possible.  When hydrocele symptoms first emerge, it is best to see a specialized physician. This will lessen the likelihood of complications of hydrocele and stop the illness from getting worse.

How to Test and Treat Hydrocele?

This should begin with a physical examination by your healthcare professional. It probably consists of:

  • Examining a larger scrotum for discomfort.
  • Applying pressure to the scrotum and stomach region to look for an inguinal hernia.
  • Flashing a light through the scrotum. A hydrocele in you or your child will be seen under the light as clear fluid around the testicle.

Next, you might require:

  • You can find out if you or your kid has an infection by having blood and urine testing.
  • An ultrasonography examination is to look for tumors, hernias, or other reasons why the scrotum is swollen.

Sometimes, a hydrocele in a baby resolves on its own. However, it's crucial for a medical professional to check for hydrocele at any age. This is due to the possibility that it is related to a testicular issue.

If a hydrocele doesn't go away on its own, surgery may be required to remove it. After surgery, some patients are not required to spend the night in the hospital. You are given medication to numb discomfort before the hydrocele removal procedure. Additionally, some medicines induce sleep-like symptoms.

A cut is made in the lower abdomen or scrotum by the surgeon to remove the hydrocele. Occasionally, a hydrocele is discovered during an inguinal hernia repair procedure. In this instance, even if the hydrocele is not uncomfortable, the surgeon may choose to remove it.

Following surgery, you may require a large bandage for a few days and a tube to drain fluid. A follow-up examination could be necessary since a hydrocele might recur.


Most congenital hydroceles disappear before the age of two. Parents of these individuals should thus get appropriate counseling to help them manage their worries. If hydrocele appears later in life, the prognosis depends on determining the underlying condition. By now, you are well aware of the consequences of hydrocele.  You should be aware that the hydrocele may reoccur despite good medical or surgical treatment. Therefore, go over everything in detail with your physician.