Swelling in the inguinal region
The appearance of a swelling in the inguinal region may occur acutely. Often times, inflammation can be accompanied by pain. The inguinal canal is called the inguinal ring, a natural weak point and a possible reason for the appearance of a swelling in the inguinal region. There are muscles, nerves, blood vessels and lymph nodes in the men’s spermatic cord and some other structures.
Through the hole in the inner abdominal wall of the area of the inguinal canal can make protrusion tissues and contents of the abdominal cavity that can cause the appearance of a swelling in the inguinal region. This is what is called inguinal hernia and is very common in men. However, there are other causes that can cause a swelling of the area.
Swelling in the inguinal region causes
A swelling in the inguinal region can have different causes. A common and typical cause of swelling in the inguinal region is an inguinal hernia. The contents of the abdominal cavity slide through the inguinal orifice, eg the intestine, passing through the inguinal canal. This mainly affects men.
Another cause of enlargement of the inguinal region may be due to the lymph nodes in the area which can increase due to inflammation and be very painful. This inflammation of the lymph nodes is often the cause of the appearance of a groin in the area. Enlargement of the lymph nodes also occur in diseases that affect lymph nodes, such as cancer.
Other possible causes include the appearance of an abscess (encapsulated inflammation) or thrombosis (blood clots) at the level of the inguinal region. Inflammation of a lymph node in the hip joint may manifest as swelling of the groin. Sometimes, a partial decline of a testicle (cryptorchidism) or a hydrocele (accumulation of fluid in the testicles) may be the cause of swelling of the inguinal region. In addition, after abdominal surgery, swelling of the transient inguinal region may occur.
Diagnosis of swelling in the inguinal region
The appearance of any type of swelling in inguinal region requires review by a physician. If it is a hernia, it may even require urgent surgical treatment, since the abdominal contents may suffer a strangulation and an infarct which lead to tissue death and lead to acute peritonitis. Malignant tumors such as lymphomas (lymph nodes) should also be ruled out.
Doctor must ask some key questions such as ‘’when did you notice swelling?’’ The physical examination is performed for the first time with the patient lying down. In this case, the doctor examines the swelling and palpation in detail. To confirm the diagnosis, doctor asks you to cough and squeeze to see if swelling increases (which in this case is a hernia). The doctor also examines whether the contents of the tumor can be reintroduced into the abdominal cavity.
Before swelling of the groin, doctor can usually use imaging procedures with ultrasound. Depending on the suspected cause, further investigations may be necessary. When the cause is from inflammation or enlargement of a lymph node, a blood test and the removal of a sample of tissue (biopsy) may be necessary.
Swelling in the inguinal region treatment
The treatment of an inguinal swelling depends on the underlying cause. A hernia requires surgery. Belts or braces for hernias are only recommended if surgery is not possible, but should never be applied by the same patient as self-treatment without consulting a physician.
Surgery is the only possible treatment for inguinal hernias because a part of the abdominal wall has been perforated and this has to be repaired by sewing and sometimes by surgical patches.
If an inflamed lymph node is the cause of groin swelling, treatment depends on the cause. Very small and benign nodules like a lipoma can be easily removed by the doctor. Malignant tumors (such as lymphoma or leukemia) that cause swelling of the groin area require special treatment ( chemotherapy and radiation therapy).