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congenital hydrocele: All we need to know
congenital hydrocele: Symptoms, Causes, Diagnosis and Treatment


It is a condition when the baby is born with part of stomach pushed in the lung cavity.

One in about 4,000 babies suffer from this, some children may not show symptoms for some years. (1)

- Treatable by medical professionals
- Medically-diagnosed
- Laboratory tests and imaging are always required
- Can be chronic: Hernia may come back after treatment
- Condition in children from birth

The upper parts of the stomach move in the chest cavity through hiatus (opening for food pipe into the stomach) in the diaphragm as the baby grows in the womb. The lungs are squeezed and cannot grow properly. Upward backflow of gastric acid from the stomach is noticed. Some babies die after birth as they can not breathe.


Severity of the symptoms can be life threatening in some cases.


Children may experience
Affected breathing: Difficulty in breathing, or fast breathing
Heart rate: Fast
Cyanosis: The skin becomes bluish
Abnormality in the chest: One side develops larger than the other
Abdomen Looks concave
Pain: In the chest
Heartburn: Dire when bending or lying down
Swallowing difficulty


Self-care: Diet with nutritional supplements is required; wounds to be kept dry and regular follow-ups are necessary.
Medications: Breathing is regulated with breathing tubes or other machines. Medicines for pain and sedation are given through catheters placed in the blood.

Surgery: A heart-lung bypass called extracorporeal membrane oxygenation is done to insert large catheters in the neck. Surgical repair of the diaphragm is done or later depending on the baby’s condition and stability.
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