VARICOCELE Q & A
Varicocele is one of the most common—and most treatable—causes of male infertility, affecting as many as 30% of couples having difficulty conceiving. Once the varicocele is treated and resolved, chances of conception are improved.
It is estimated that 15% of men will develop varicoceles at some point during their lives. Many go undiagnosed.
What Is Varicocele?
A varicocele is a varicose vein of the testicle or scrotum. Due to the vein structure of the male anatomy, varicocele is commonly found in the left testicle. It can cause pain, interfere with fertility, and testicular atrophy, that is, shrinkage of the testicles.
Frequently Asked Questions
Varicocele Patient Education
What Causes Varicocele?
Normally one-way valves in healthy veins within the scrotum allow blood to flow from the testicles and scrotum and back to the heart.
In a varicocele, these valves do not function properly, causing blood to pool and enlarge the vein. The pooling blood heats up and raises the temperature of the scrotum area, thus decreasing sperm count and motility, and increasing the number of deformed sperm.
What Are Varicocele Symptoms?
Most common symptoms of varicocele are pain when sitting, standing, or exercising, or a chronic, dull pain. Other symptoms include:
- Shrinking of one testicle
- Inability to impregnate partner
- Unusual bulges in one testicle
- Pain that worsens during the day
- Relief from pain when lying on back
What Are Risk Factors for Varicocele?
Currently there are no known risk factors for developing varicoceles. Varicoceles often develop during puberty, likely due to hormonal changes in the body.
How Is Varicocele Treated?
Physicians use varicocele embolization, a minimally invasive procedure, to treat the bulging vein and restore blood flow.
Specialized Patient Care
If you have testicular pain or low sperm count caused by varicoceles, Dr. Jilbert Eradat can help. With expertise in diagnosing and treating varicoceles, Dr. Eradat gives each patient individualized attention. Major insurance plans and Medicare accepted..