advertisement



Q & A Library


Print this page | Sign up for free e-bulletins
 | Bookmark This Page

Q
Hydrocele: A Male Menace?

My husband has had multiple occurrences of a hydrocele. He has taken many courses of antibiotics, which sometimes work and sometimes don't. Are there any herbal or vitamin remedies for a hydrocele? 

A
Answer (Published 4/28/2008)

A hydrocele is a fluid-filled sac surrounding a testicle that makes itself known by causing swelling of the scrotum. About one in 10 baby boys is born with a hydrocele but most of them disappear without treatment within the first year of life. An estimated one percent of adult men, usually those over 40, develop hydroceles in response to injury or infection within the scrotum, or as a consequence of radiation therapy. Hydroceles usually aren't painful or harmful, and need no treatment unless they get very big. If so, they can be surgically corrected. (Draining the fluid by needle is a temporary solution.)

Related Weil Products
Dr. Weil's Vitamin Advisor for Your Whole Body - Foods, herbs and drugs can all interact, sometimes in unexpected ways. Dr. Weil's Vitamin Advisor takes known interactions into account when developing nutritional supplement recommendations, to help safeguard against adverse effects. Learn more, and get your free, personalized Dr. Weil's Vitamin Advisor recommendation today.

I reviewed your question with Randy Horwitz, M.D., Ph.D., medical director of the Arizona Center for Integrative Medicine. He stressed that the most important aspect of treating a presumed hydrocele is accurate diagnosis. The main concern is to make sure that the problem isn’t an incarcerated inguinal hernia, a potentially life-threatening condition that can occur when part of the intestine pushes through a weak spot in the inguinal canal (an opening between layers of abdominal muscle near the groin) and becomes trapped there. These cases require surgery. Another possible cause that is rare in the United States but common in less developed countries (and can occur among men who travel to these areas) is filiarisis (elephantiasis), an infection caused by a parasitic worm.

Dr. Horwitz says that in most cases patients just need reassurance that the condition is not harmful. Surgery may be indicated if the skin of the scrotum is irritated or weakened by chronic pressure or if the diagnosis is uncertain. Neither Dr. Horwitz nor I know of any natural remedies for hydrocele.

Andrew Weil, M.D.

Creative Commons License Some Rights Reserved Creative Commons Copyright Notice
A portion of the original material created by Weil Lifestyle, LLC on DrWeil.com (specifically, all question and answer-type articles in the Dr. Weil Q&A Library) is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.

The Weil Vitamin Advisor
Get your FREE personalized vitamin recommendation & supplement plan today!

Dr. Weil on Healthy Aging
Your Online Guide to the Anti-Inflammatory Diet. Start eating for your health - begin your free trial now.

Dr. Weil's Spontaneous Happiness
Achieve emotional well-being
in just eight weeks!
Start your 10-day free trial now!

Vitamin Library
Supplement your knowledge with Dr. Weil's essential vitamin facts. Learn why they are necessary and more.

Dr. Weil's Optimum Health Plan
Your 8-week plan to wellness.
Begin your journey today!
 

Dr. Weil's Head-to-Toe
Wellness Guide

Your guide to natural health.
Use the Wellness Guide today!

Dr. Weil's Anti-Inflammatory Diet Food Pyramid
Our interactive tool can help improve overall health through diet.

Condition Care Guide
Learn about health conditions from acne to vertigo, and Dr. Weil's view of the best treatment options for each.

Healthy Recipes
Discover a treasure trove of healthy, healing foods and creative, delicious ways to prepare them.

Q&A Library
Over 2,000 questions from you
and their corresponding answers
from Dr. Weil.

 
Copyright © 2014 Weil Lifestyle, LLC
Information on this web site is provided for informational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for the advice provided by your physician or other healthcare professional. You should not use the information on this web site for diagnosing or treating a health problem or disease, or prescribing any medication or other treatment.

Ad Choice
Advertising Notice

This Site and third parties who place advertisements on this Site may collect and use information about your visits to this Site and other websites in order to provide advertisements about goods and services of interest to you. If you would like to obtain more information about these advertising practices and to make choices about online behavioral advertising, please click here