Ten to 15 % of men will develop varicoceles, many without knowing it. The incidence of varicoceles in infertile couples is about 30 %.

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Symptoms of Varicoceles


Varicoceles are varicose veins specific to men that develop in the scrotum or testicles. Ten to fifteen % of men develop them, but some may not even know it. If they do have symptoms, men might experience a dull pain or discomfort that worsens as the day goes on or flares up after exercising. In addition to pain, varicoceles can also cause the testicle to shrink. They may also raise the temperature of the testicle, contributing to infertility.

Some varicoceles do not have symptoms. Varicoceles typically create discomfort or dull or sharp pain in the scrotum that:

  • Gets worse with exercise or exertion
  • Gets better when you lie on your back
  • Is worse when you stand or sit for long periods
  • Worsens over the normal course of the day

Varicoceles can also cause:

  • Swelling in one testicle, usually on the left side
  • Shrinking of a testicle
  • Swollen veins in the scrotum
  • Low sperm count and poor sperm quality


Treatment for Varicoceles

Not all varicoceles need treatment. If varicoceles are causing problems, they can be quickly and easily treated in our office with a minimally invasive procedure called percutaneous embolization.

Using imaging in real time, the varicocele is located and reached through a small nick in the skin. A CiC doctor then introduces tiny coils or a scarring agent into the vein, permanently closing it off.

Benefits of percutaneous embolization

Percutaneous embolization is an alternative to surgery, and many men choose it because:

  • Its a simple procedure that can be done right in our office
  • It doesnt require general anesthesia
  • They can return to work the next day
  • Pain relief is almost immediate

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