It is common to hear about varicocele being referred to as the cause of male infertility.
It suffices to know that the condition is diagnosed physically when the veins of the scrotum are enlarged and distended causing the entire area to look black and blue.
It is similar to varicose veins that occur in the legs. This condition cannot occur overnight though. Instead the veins get enlarged over a period with the condition being identifiable easily.
Fertility doctors are concerned about their patients who have varicocele as it can affect the quality of sperms adversely.
It is also one of the prominent reasons for low sperm count and infertility in males. Sometimes, the dissented veins take up maximum space within the scrotum causing the testes to shrink considerably.
The testes fail to grow and develop normally in others who have been living with untreated varicocele for a long time.
Mild form of varicocele rarely reveals symptoms apart from enlargement of the veins.
It does not require treatment as people can continue to lead normal lives in spite of having distended veins within their scrotum.
The condition can be reversed surgically if there are any symptoms resulting in discomfort.
Varicocele becomes noticeable once the veins have enlarged substantially. The appearance has been likened to a ‘bag of worms’ often. Some of the most obvious signs of severe varicocele may cause any of the following:-
- Swelling of the testicle on the left side of the body
- A dull ache in the scrotum
- Discomfort increases when the patient remains standing for a long time or does strenuous physical activity
- The mild pain may increase slowly as the day progresses
- The pain lessens when the patient lies down
- Low sperm count & poor quality
Doctors and medical researchers have not been able to pinpoint the cause of varicocele so far.
However, it is common knowledge that the spermatic cord supplies blood to the testes. Experts believe that any impedance to normal blood low caused by the valves present inside the veins result in varicocele.
The blood that is unable to reach the testes accumulates within the veins causing them to be engorged. Too much blood inside the veins may cause certain complications amounting to:-
Atrophy of Testis– The testicle is likely to shrink and become much smaller when the veins engorged with blood presses on it. The smaller sized testis may affect the sperm producing tubes present inside it adversely as well. The testis may also be damaged when it comes in contact with the toxins present in the accumulated blood within the veins.
Infertility– While extended pressure on the sperm producing tubules may hinder sperm production, varicocele may also result in increasing the temperature around the testicles thus hindering the formation of sperm and slowing down the movement.
Varicocele Treatment Options
Treating a varicocele may not be required at all. In fact the mild conditions pose no problems with males being able to continue with their normal lives.
There are instances of many men going on to become a father in spite of being diagnosed with varicocele. However, varicoceles that are painful or have caused the testes to atrophy may need to be repaired by surgical intervention.
Patients considering infertility treatment are advised to treat the condition as well. Commonly used treatment options for patients with varicocele include:-
Open Surgery – This is a simple method with the surgery taking place in the outpatient department. The vein is approached via the groin and repaired by the professional. The process of “microsurgical subinguinal varicocelectomy” has been found to be highly successful with the patient being able to enjoy a normal sperm count about 3 months after the procedure.
Laparoscopy– The surgeon approaches the veins by making a small incision in the abdomen to arry out the repairs. The patient is under general anesthesia during this process.
Percutaneous embolization– Varicocle is repaired by introducing a specific solution into the affected vein through the groin or neck. Blood flow to the testicular veins is thus blocked and the required repairs carried out. Although this is fairly quick, it is not used as often as the aforementioned procedures.
Do visit https://kicbengaluru.com/male-infertility/ to know how varicocele can be repaired during assisted reproductive procedures with varicocele treatments being highly effective in ensuring successful IVF/ICSI as well.
Call 7204051333 / 9900967627 to book an appointment with the best fertility experts at KIC, Bengaluru. You may also email email@example.com for additional information.
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