Mar 3, 2008
Congenital Inguinal Hernia/ Hydrocele
Congenital inguinal hernia or hydrocele is because of the patent processus vaginalis. Processus vaginalis is the tract, which extends from groin to the scrotal sac. After birt, this tract gets fused. If this processus vaginalis remains patent then hernia or hydrocele develops. If the tract is wide enough to allow the intestines then hernia develops but if the tract is narrow which allow only fluid then hydrocele develops.
In case of hernia, the parents usually notice the bulge limited to the groin or extending into scrotal sac. This swelling comes after straining, crying, jumping, playing & reduces spontaneously or after lying down. It is not painful. In case of hydrocele, the swelling is limited to the scrotum & it does not reduces.The size remains almost same.
The diagnosis is by simply clinical examination and does not require any special test.
The management of hernia and hydrocele differs.In cases of hydrocele, one can wait till one year of age as there is chance of spontaneous regression while in case of hernia, the child needs to be operated as early as possible as there are chances of obstruction. The best person to treat this type of cases is the surgeons who are specialized in paediatric surgery.The operation can be done as a day care surgery or will require one day hospitalization. It is done under general anaesthesia and the child can be fed 4 hours after surgery.