A hydrocele is an accumulation of fluid in any sac-like cavity or duct - specifically in the tunica vaginalis testis or along the spermatic cord.
- In the pediatric age group, it is usually due to a patent processus vaginalis (communication between abdominal cavity and scrotum).
- In older men, any process that acts to stimulate increased production of serous fluid (e.g., tumor, inflammation, trauma) by the tunica or decreases the resorption of this fluid
A smooth, cystic feeling mass completely surrounding the testicle and not involving the spermatic cord is characteristic of a hydrocele.
Surgical excision is perhaps the most effective form of treatment. In surgery, the bulk of the hydrocele sac is cut away, and what remains is turned inside out.