Hydrocele: Symptoms & Signs

Medically Reviewed on 9/10/2019

A hydrocele is a collection of clear fluid within the scrotum, the sac that also contains the testicles. It can occur on one or both sides of the scrotum.

Signs and symptoms associated with a hydrocele include a non-painful swelling found on one or both sides of the scrotum. There is typically no pain or testicular discomfort with a hydrocele. In some cases, the scrotal swelling increases during the day due to the effects of gravity. Crying, coughing, straining, and other movements that increase pressure within the abdomen can also increase the size of the hydrocele.

Causes of hydrocele

The cause of a hydrocele is an error in embryonic development that allows fluid to seep into the scrotal sac.

Other hydrocele symptoms and signs

  • Non-Painful Swelling of the Scrotum
  • Testicular Discomfort


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Kasper, D.L., et al., eds. Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine, 19th Ed. United States: McGraw-Hill Education, 2015.