Varicoceles - Health Center


By Refadoc, Posted on : Thursday, 01 October 2015 - 4:50 am IST

Varicoceles – Overview

Only a handful of people know about this chronic condition known as Varicocele. This is basically the enlargement of the veins within the scrotum of the affected person. Varicocele is just like the condition when there is an enlargement of a vein on the surface of your leg


This is a very common condition which causes the

low production of the sperms

accompanied with the decrease in the quality of the sperm – two major factors which lead to infertility in men. However, not all theVaricocele are known to affect the production of the sperm as it leads to the shrinking of the testicles.

Varicoceles are known to affect older men more. However, they are quite easy to diagnose and do not need an extensive treatment. If a person exhibits any symptoms for Varicocele, then they can be treated easily with the help of the surgery.

Causes of Varicocele

The spermatic cord is responsible for carrying the blood to and from the testicles. It is not certain as to what is the real cause for Varicocele, but the common belief is that when the valves on the inside of the cord prevent the blood from flowing through the veins, it results in the veins to become dilated and therefore results in damage to the testicles and the resultant worsened fertility is the major outcome of Varicocele.

Often during puberty, this condition is developed, and is more likely to take place on the left side of the body due to the position of the left testicular veins. However, it has been noticed that a Varicocele on the one testicle can hamper the sperm production in both the testicles.

Signs and Symptoms of Varicocele

There are no known signs and symptoms of Varicocele. Rarely, it is known to cause any pain.

However, some of the major signs are as follows:

  •   Light pain which can vary from dull discomfort to a feeling of heaviness
  •   Increase in the standing or physical exertion
  •   Worsening of the pain over the passage of time
  •   Relief in the pain after lying on the back.

With the passage of the time, the Varicocele can become enlarged and can become more noticeable. The doctor 

can opt for the physical examination or a fertility evaluation test in order to diagnose the disease in a person. However, with the swelling in the scrotum or the discovery of the mass in the scrotum, immediate treatment is needed for the condition.

Tests and Diagnosis of Varicocele

A physical exam is best suited in order to look for the problem. With a physical examination, the medical practitioner

 may be able to look for the twisted as well as a non tender mass on the top of the testicles. The Sexologist will be able to feel the mass most of the time.

In some cases, when the physical examination is not able to detect the condition, then the medical practitioner may ask for an ultrasound exam for the condition. In this, high frequency waves are pointed in order to create accurate images of the structures inside the body of the person.

This can also be used in order to make sure that there is no other reason for the occurrence of these symptoms such as tumours.

Treatment and Drugs for Varicocele

Generally, no treatment is needed for the curing of the Varicocele.

However, the treatment options for the same are as follows:

Open Surgery: In this, the affected vein is approached from the groin area. With the help of the surgical microscope the doctor is able to operate on the area. Another option is to go in for the Doppler ultrasound which helps the doctors to guide around the area for the surgery. The pain from the surgery is very mild and can be kept in check with the help of the painkillers such as OTC Painkillers.

After the surgery, it is recommended to not have sex for about one or two weeks. Also, after three months of the surgery, the patient is called back for the semen analysis by which the Medical Practitioner can check if the Varicocele treatment has been successful or not.

Open surgery has emerged to be one of the most successful ways for the treatment of the condition. View the list of sexologists 

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