A hydrocelectomy is a surgical procedure designed to remove or repair a hydrocele. A hydrocele is a fluid-filled sac that develops around the testicle, leading to swelling in the scrotum—the pouch that encloses the testes (testicles). In cases where hydroceles affect both testicles, a bilateral hydrocelectomy may be necessary. The term “bilateral” indicates that the condition impacts both the left and right testicles.
Hydroceles can be concerning because of their visible presence and their location in a sensitive part of the body. Although they are typically painless and may sometimes improve without intervention, it is important to promptly discuss any abnormalities in the scrotum with a healthcare provider. Such changes could potentially signal a more serious underlying issue.
Hydrocele surgery cost
Typically, the expense for hydrocele surgery in India starts at ₹25,000 and can go up to ₹85,000 on average. It is essential to choose a skilled and experienced urologist for the hydrocele procedure to ensure the best possible outcomes and minimize the risk of complications.
Factors that affect hydrocele cost
Laser hydrocelectomy and open hydrocelectomy are two frequently conducted procedures for addressing hydrocele. The expenses associated with these surgeries may vary for individual patients, influenced by the following factors:
- Consultation fees from the laparoscopic surgeon
- Hospital admission fees
- The nature and severity of the hydrocele
- Transportation costs (to and from the hospital)
- Anesthesia expenses or fees for the anesthesiologist
- The type of surgery performed, whether laser or open hydrocelectomy
- Costs related to diagnostic tests or laboratory examinations
- Charges for follow-up sessions
How serious is a hydrocele?
Hydroceles can be concerning due to the abrupt swelling they cause in a delicate area of the body. Depending on their size, hydroceles might be troublesome in certain cases, such as causing discomfort when sitting or walking if they are large. Nonetheless, for many individuals, a hydrocele is not a serious, bothersome, or painful condition.
After hydrocele surgery
The size of your scrotum should return to its usual dimensions within a few weeks to a month following a hydrocelectomy. It is advisable to refrain from engaging in strenuous activities and sexual intercourse for a minimum of two weeks. While showering is permitted, it is recommended to abstain from bathing until the area has fully healed.
Types of hydroceles
Two categories of hydroceles exist: communicating hydroceles and noncommunicating hydroceles.
A communicating hydrocele maintains contact or communication with the fluids in the abdominal cavity, which is the space containing organs such as the stomach, intestines, liver, and kidneys. These hydroceles develop during fetal development. In the fetus, a thin membrane called the processes vaginalis forms between certain tissues in the stomach lining (inguinal canal) and the scrotum. Typically, this membrane allows the testicles to descend from the abdomen through the processes vaginalis into the scrotum. Tissue then forms to seal the opening, preventing fluid from the abdominal cavity from flowing into the scrotum and causing a hydrocele or hernia. If this seal doesn’t form, a communicating hydrocele can result, leading to a visibly enlarged or swollen scrotum that may change in size throughout the day.
In a noncommunicating hydrocele, the processes vaginalis closes, but some excess abdominal fluid remains around the testicle in the scrotum. These hydroceles may be present at birth or develop later in life without an apparent cause. If an individual has a noncommunicating hydrocele, it typically maintains a consistent size or grows very slowly over time.
Symptoms of a hydrocele
The primary indication of a hydrocele is the enlargement of one or both sides of the scrotum, resembling the sensation of a water balloon. Additional symptoms in the scrotal region may include:
- Changes in the size of swelling throughout the day.
- A sense of heaviness.
Causes of hydrocele
Hydroceles in infants are generally present from birth, often forming as a natural part of fetal development. During this process, if the closure of the processus vaginalis is incomplete, abdominal fluid may enter the scrotum. Alternatively, even if the processus vaginalis closes properly, some abdominal fluid might persist in the scrotum. Typically, a child’s body absorbs this fluid within the initial two years of life.
A hydrocele in a child or adult can be diagnosed by a healthcare provider who will inquire about symptoms and conduct a physical examination. During this examination, the provider may exert pressure on the groin area, instruct you to cough to observe changes in swelling, and use a light to illuminate any abdominal fluid in the scrotum. In most cases, a provider can diagnose a hydrocele through a physical exam alone.
To validate the diagnosis, the healthcare provider might prescribe imaging tests, such as a pelvic ultrasound. This procedure utilizes high-frequency sound waves to generate images of the soft tissues in the pelvis, including the testicles, and is commonly employed for hydrocele diagnoses. Additionally, a computed tomography (CT) scan, a more precise imaging method that produces 3D images by taking cross-section pictures of the body, may be ordered to further confirm the diagnosis.
Complications or side effects of hydrocele surgery
Although a hydrocelectomy is generally considered a safe procedure, as with any surgical intervention, there are inherent risks. Potential hazards associated with hydrocele surgery encompass:
- Risks related to anesthesia.
- Possibility of infection.
- Occurrence of swelling.
- Development of bruising.
- Formation of scars.
- Risk of hydrocele recurrence.
Best Treatment of hydrocele
If a hydrocele persists and doesn’t resolve spontaneously, surgical removal may be necessary. Not all individuals undergoing hydrocele surgery are required to stay overnight in the hospital. Before the procedure, you are administered medication to prevent pain, and one type of medication induces a sleep-like state.