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Similar to varicose veins in the leg, varicoceles are a network of abnormally enlarged veins that drain blood from the testicles. They usually develop in the scrotum on the left side during or after puberty. Although most cases of varicoceles appear in the left side, they can affect sperm production in both testicles.

Varicoceles do not resolve on their own once they develop. Many patients do not experience any symptoms from varicoceles, but when present symptoms can include:

  • Varying degrees of pain, especially during certain movements
  • Swelling in the scrotum
  • Testicular atrophy
  • Abnormal or insufficient sperm production
  • Slower or limited growth in affected testicle
  • Infertility



Urology VaricoceleWhat is a Varicocelectomy?

Varicocelectomy is a minimally invasive surgical procedure used to provide relief for men suffering from a urological condition known as varicoceles. The surgeon will make a small incision in the groin and, using a microscope to assist in visualization, cut the veins responsible for the irregular blood flow and pooling that causes the varicoceles. Varicocelectomy is a minimally invasive procedure, and patients can typically go home the same day of the procedure.


Recovery from a varicocelectomy typically involves avoiding strenuous physical activity for several weeks after the procedure. Pain medication is provided to patients, but typically discomfort is minimal after the procedure.


Candidates for Varicocelectomy

After a comprehensive medical history, physical exam and semen analysis (if necessary), a urologist will help determine whether a varicocelectomy is the best course of action.


Varicocele Experts

A varicocele is an enlarged vein in the scrotum, with irregular blood flow and pooling of blood in the vein. A definitive cause for varicoceles is unclear, but the anatomy of the male reproductive system, specifically the vein’s proximity to the left kidney, could potentially cause a stronger gravitational pull that increases the likelihood of developing a varicocele. (The majority of varicoceles occur in the left testicle).

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