The accumulation of fluid in the sac around the testicle is called a hydrocele. This condition does not really put the testicle and its ability to produce sperm cells in danger. In fact, it can go away on its own in a few months to a year even with no medical treatment. However, it is important to be checked by a specialist especially if the scrotum is inflamed.
Any Male Can Get a Hydrocele
It is said that as much as 10% of newborns have it. In other words, it is quite common among infants. The condition happens when the sac surrounding the testicle of the baby fails to close completely, allowing fluid to enter. However, males at any age may also get a hydrocele at any given time.
There are two types of a hydorcele — non-communicating and communicating. A non-commuting hydorcele happens when the body fails to absorb the fluid inside the sac around the testicle within the expected time. The good news is the said fluid gradually disappears as it is eventually absorbed by the body. This type requires no medical treatment.
On the other hand, a communicating hydrocele happens when the sac around the testicle does not completely close as it should. This permits fluid to enter the sac, causing it to enlarge. This type of a hydrocele usually requires surgical treatment. That’s because it can lead to a hernia, a condition wherein an organ or a part of an organ gets displaced and protrudes through a cavity or opening.
Treatment and Remedies
In infants, a hydrocele usually goes away on its own in about a year. It can heal naturally even without any medical treatment or intervention. However, surgery may be warranted if it fails to disappear in a year’s time.
Medical experts say that adult males with a hydrocele can expect for the condition to heal on its own in about 6 months. That’s the amount of time required by the body to have the fluid inside the sac around the testicle absorbed.
The only type of a hydrocele that usually requires surgical treatment is the communicating type. The good news is it can be performed under local anesthesia and, most of the time, the patient may go home a few hours after the procedure. A drainage tube may be attached to serve as an escape for fluids after the procedure. The incision made by the surgeon is also very small. It is done either on the scrotum or abdomen, depending on the hydrocele’s location.
In some cases, aspirating the fluid inside the sac around the testicle may be performed. This involves the use of a long needle in order to draw out the accumulated fluid in the sac.
There are various remedies that may be done at home when the patient is suffering from the non-commuting type of hydrocele — the kind that requires no medical treatment. For instance, the male should avoid excessive training. This means that he should refrain from lifting heavy objects or pumping iron at the gym.
Processed or refined foods should be avoided. Instead, someone with a hydrocele should opt for a well-balanced meal in order to supply the body with the nutrients necessary for healing. It is also a good idea for the individual to include fiber-rich foods in the diet to ward off constipation and the need to strain in the toilet.
Cigarette smoking and drinking alcohol should be avoided as well. That’s because these habits will only introduce toxins in the body, and this may contribute to the formation of a hydrocele or the slow healing of one.
An effective home remedy for a hydrocele is the so-called cold hip bath. This helps in relieving the inflammation and pain (if any), and it also helps speed up the healing process. This method requires filling a bathtub with cold water and submerging the lower half of the body in it for about 15 minutes.