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by Neff DM

Definition

A spermatocele is a fluid-filled cyst in the epididymis, a long tubule attached to the testicle. A spermatocelectomy is the removal of this cyst.

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Reasons for Procedure

Spermatocelectomy is done if a spermatocele is painful or large.

Possible Complications

Problems from the procedure are rare, but all procedures have some risk. Your doctor will review potential problems, like:

  • Adverse reaction to the anesthesia
  • Infection
  • Excess bleeding
  • Swelling
  • Recurrence of spermatocele
  • Damage to the epididymis, which can increase risk of infertility
  • Nerve injury or damage to surrounding tissue or structures

Before your procedure, talk to your doctor about ways to manage factors that may increase your risk of complications such as:

What to Expect

Prior to Procedure

Your doctor may do the following:

  • Perform a physical exam
  • Blood, urine, or imaging tests
  • Ask about your medical history

Talk to your doctor about any medications, herbs, or supplements you are taking. You may be asked to stop taking some medications up to 1 week before the procedure.

Arrange for a ride home from the hospital. Arrange for help at home as your recover.

The night before your surgery, eat a light meal. Do not eat or drink anything after midnight unless told otherwise by your doctor.

Anesthesia

The procedure is done under local or general anesthesia. You will be asleep or sedated. You will not feel any pain.

Description of Procedure

Once you are asleep or sedated, a small incision will be made in your scrotum. The spermatocele will be located and removed from the epididymis. Absorbable sutures will be used to close the area.

How Long Will It Take?

Less than 1 hour

How Much Will It Hurt?

Anesthesia will prevent pain during surgery. Pain and discomfort after the procedure can be managed with medications.

Post-procedure Care

At the Care Center

After the procedure, the staff may provide the following care:

  • Pain medications and IV fluids
  • Ice pack
  • Scrotal support

During your stay, the hospital staff will take steps to reduce your chance of infection such as:

  • Washing their hands
  • Wearing gloves or masks
  • Keeping your incisions covered

There are also steps you can take to reduce your chances of infection such as:

  • Washing your hands often and reminding visitors and healthcare providers to do the same
  • Reminding your healthcare providers to wear gloves or masks
  • Not allowing others to touch your incisions
At Home

Restrict physical and sexual activity until your doctor says it is okay. You may need to wear supportive or athletic underwear during healing.

Call Your Doctor

Call your doctor if any of the following occur:

  • Increasing pain, redness, or swelling at incision site
  • Drainage, bleeding, or odor from incision site
  • Signs of infection, including fever and chills

If you think you have an emergency, call for emergency medical services right away.

RESOURCES

Family Doctor—American Academy of Family Physicians  https://familydoctor.org 

Urology Care Foundation  http://urologyhealth.org 

CANADIAN RESOURCES

Canadian Urological Association  http://www.cua.org 

Health Canada  https://www.canada.ca 

References

Common benign urologic conditions in men. EBSCO DynaMed Plus website. Available at:  https://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T919433/Common-benign-urologic-conditions-in-men  . Updated October 2, 2017. Accessed March 8, 2018.

How are spermatoceles treated? Urology Care Foundation website. Available at: http://www.urologyhealth.org/urologic-conditions/spermatoceles/treatment. Accessed March 8, 2018.

Painless scrotal mass. Merck Manual Professional Version website. Available at: https://www.merckmanuals.com/professional/genitourinary-disorders/symptoms-of-genitourinary-disorders/painless-scrotal-mass. Updated March 2017. Accessed March 8, 2018.

Scrotal surgery: discharge advice. University College Hospital website. Available at: https://www.uclh.nhs.uk/PandV/PIL/Patient%20information%20leaflets/Scrotal%20surgery.pdf. Accessed March 8, 2018.

6/2/2011 DynaMed Plus Systematic Literature Surveillance  https://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T905141/Treatment-for-tobacco-use  : Mills E, Eyawo O, Lockhart I, Kelly S, Wu P, Ebbert JO. Smoking cessation reduces postoperative complications: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Am J Med. 2011;124(2):144-154.

Revision Information

  • Reviewer: EBSCO Medical Review Board Adrienne Carmack, MD
  • Review Date: 03/2018
  • Update Date: 04/29/2014