1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Hydrocele

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HYDROCELE (Gr. ὕδωρ, water, and κήλη, tumour), the medical term for any collection of fluid other than pus or blood in the neighbourhood of the testis or cord. The fluid is usually serous. Hydrocele may be congenital or arise in the middle-aged without apparent cause, but it is usually associated with chronic orchitis or with tertiary syphilitic enlargements. The hydrocele appears as a rounded, fluctuating translucent swelling in the scrotum, and when greatly distended causes a dragging pain. Palliative treatment consists in tapping aseptically and removing the fluid, the patient afterwards wearing a suspender. The condition frequently recurs and necessitates radical treatment. Various substances may be injected; or the hydrocele is incised, the tunica partly removed and the cavity drained.