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Varicocele

What is a Varicocele?

Varicocele is a condition of venous insufficiency where the veins in the scrotum (a skin-covered sac that holds the testicles) get enlarged due to poor functioning of the valves located in the veins. It is a common condition in males between 15-25 years of age and is prevalent among 15-20% of the male population, being the most common cause of infertility.

Formation of Varicocele

How does it form?

Varicoceles are caused due to vein abnormalities in the scrotum. The valves within the veins regulate blood flow to and from the testicels. Due to the abnormalities caused by a defective valve in the vein, blood circulation becomes irregular, causing the blood to pool. This results in an enlargement or inflammation of the veins in the scrotum. 

This condition most commonly takes place during puberty, when the testicles are experiencing rapid growth. In about 85% of the cases, varicoceles are found on the left side of the scrotum. In rare cases, it can also exist on both sides of the scrotum. 

Types of Varicoceles

Stop-type varicoceles

Stop-type varicoceles

Shunt-type varicoceles

Shunt-type varicoceles

Causes - Varicocele Treatment

  • Blockage in the spermatic cord
  • Injury around the scrotum or testicles
  • Infections like epididymitis
  • Drinking water while standing
  • Exercising without any protective gear
  • Puberty

Symptoms - Varicocele Treatment

  • Visible lump or swelling in the scrotum
  • Dull and recurring pain in the scrotum
  • Swelling and intensifying pain around the scrotum
  • Visibly twisted veins in the scrotum
  • Feeling of heaviness in the testicles
  • Infertility

Diagnosis - Varicocele Treatment

  • Valsalva Maneuver: Valsalva maneuver is a breathing technique that is directed by the doctor in order to diagnose problems related to the autonomic nervous system. In this diagnostic test, the urologist will ask you to breathe out strongly through your mouth while holding your nose tightly closed in a standing position. This will exert increased pressure in your chest and will help the doctor in detecting the presence of any abnormal enlargement of the veins in the scrotum.
  • Scrotal/Doppler Ultrasound: This test uses sound waves to create images of the organs inside your body. The doctor will be able to classify your varicocele based on the size of the lump, as this test helps in determining the direction of blood flow in your scrotal veins and can help the doctor in finding out how large the veins in the scrotum are.
  • Scrotal Infrared Digital Thermography: This is a non-invasive diagnostic method which helps in the detection of a varicocele in its initial stages. This test measures the temperature of the skin surface around the scrotum. Thermography of the scrotum is quite useful in diagnosing low-grade varicoceles and is also used in follow-up diagnostic tests after an operative treatment of the condition.
tests of Varicocele

Severity - Varicocele Treatment

 In this stage, the varicocele is not visible and can only be felt when the patient is straining, which is why the physician uses a valsalva maneuver.

Grade I

Varicocele Treatment - Risks and Complications

Fluid build-up around the testicle, which can lead to hydrocele

  • Prevention of Varicocele

    Prevention - Varicocele

    Prevention of Varicocele

    The fact is, there is no way to prevent a varicocele. However, you might be able to restrict the condition from getting worse by taking certain measures that include- maintaining good health, following a healthy diet, drinking enough water and avoiding smoking. In order to make sure that your condition does not escalate any further, you should also avoid wearing tight fitted clothes. Improving and maintaining the health of your veins can help you deal with the pain and discomfort.

  • Myths and Facts about Varicocele

    Myths & Facts - Varicocele

    Myths and Facts about Varicocele

    Myth 1: Varicocele is caused by taking cold showers.

    Fact: No, taking cold showers does not lead to varicocele. However, in certain cases, it might cause the scrotum to contract.

    Myth 2: A varicocele is a rare condition.

    Fact: Varicocele is a common condition. Between 10-15 percent of all men develop varicocele at some point in their life.

    Myth 3: Decreased fertility is the only complication that can arise from a varicocele.

    Fact: While infertility is the prime concern, varicoceles can cause other complications as well. They can be the cause of reduced testosterone production which can lead to complications like metabolic syndrome, osteoporosis and diabetes.

    Myth 4: Lifestyle changes do not affect fertility.

    Fact: Certainly not. Leading a sedentary lifestyle and smoking may have a significant impact on the semen parameters and sperm health of a man and can worsen the condition of a varicocele.

    Myth 5: Varicocele is not dangerous and can be left untreated.

    Fact: A varicocele is not usually life-threatening and might not even require immediate treatment. However, given the complications it can cause, it is always a wise choice to consult a urologist and seek proper treatment.

  • Lesser known facts about Varicocele

    Lesser known facts about Varicocele

    Lesser known facts about Varicocele
    • Varicoceles are more noticeable while standing up.

     

    • Reports regarding the presence of varicocele in the testes are dated back to the 1st century A.D.

     

    • The fact that varicocele is related to infertility came into light between the end of the 19th and the beginning of the 20th century.

     

    • In 78-93% of the cases, varicocele is located on the left side of the scrotum or the left-testicle.

     

    • In 1952, William Shelby Tulloch first reported that bilateral surgical repair of varicocele in a man resulted in an increase in sperm concentration and a spontaneous pregnancy.

When to consult a doctor for Varicocele Treatment?

A condition of varicocele does not lead to life-threatening complications and might not be an immediate medical emergency. However, it can possibly lead to a number of complications that include infertility and reduced testosterone production that can lead to problems like metabolic syndrome, osteoporosis and diabetes. 

If you are experiencing any of the signs and symptoms of varicocele and are aware that it is affecting your fertility or sperm production, you should right away consult a urologist without a delay.

Questions to ask your doctor about Varicocele Treatment.

Q1. What is the most likely cause of my symptoms?
Q2. Will this condition affect my fertility?
Q3. What are the treatment options available to me?
Q4. Are there any possible complications I am yet to face?
Q5. I have these other health conditions. How can I best manage both together?
Q6. Are my symptoms likely to get worse without treatment?
Q7. What are the chances of the treatment improving my fertility?
Q8. Are there any chances of my condition recurring after treatment?

Varicocele Treatment Options & Cost

  • Varicocele Embolization: This is a non-surgical daycare procedure that involves the injecting of a small catheter through the groin area into the scrotal vein. A coil is inserted through the catheter into the varicocele and it blocks the affected veins. This redirects the blood flow to the circulatory system via an alternate pathway through the healthy veins which later results in the collapsing of the damaged veins.
Insurance Coverage - Varicocele Treatment

Insurance Coverage - Varicocele Treatment

Most of the surgeries at Pristyn Care are covered under insurance. But, insurance coverage also depends on the type of insurance you choose and the place you opt it from. An insurance team from Pristyn Care will check all your insurance papers and will let you know whether the treatment for varicocele can be covered under insurance or not. 

Insurance Coverage - Varicocele Treatment
Recovery rate of Varicocele - Varicocele Treatment

Recovery Rate - Varicocele Treatment

Over the years, surgical procedures have been immensely successful in treating varicoceles with a proven success rate, which is above 90%. But, like any other surgical treatment, the success or risks associated with varicocele treatment are also highly dependent upon the severity of the condition and the surgeon’s experience. 

Post-operative care also plays an important role in ensuring a proper recovery. It is important to follow the doctor’s instructions to eliminate the risks of any possible complications.

Recovery rate of Varicocele - Varicocele Treatment

Latest Research

  • Study suggests that Varicoceles could be an early presentation of a non-functioning adrenocortical carcinoma

  • Study suggests that men who suffer symptoms from varicoceles are more likely to develop vascular disease and metabolic disease

  • Research claims that diabetes can lead to varicocele or enlarged veins within the scrotum

FAQ's around Varicocele Treatment

Which doctor should be consulted if I have a varicocele?

You should consult a urologist to diagnose and treat your varicocele.

Do all varicoceles require treatment?

Varicoceles in certain conditions might never require treatment. But, if it causes pain, swelling and discomfort, infertility or testicular atrophy, it would require medical attention.

Does varicocele cause sexual weakness?

After surgery, the veins will no longer be connected to the rest of the body and will no longer cause pain or harm to sperm production.

How long does it take for veins to disappear after Varicocelectomy?

It takes about 3-4 weeks for a vein to completely disappear after a varicocelectomy.

When will I be able to return to work after Varicocelectomy?

You will probably be able to return to work or your normal routine in 2 to 3 days after a microscopic surgery, depending upon your job.

Can a varicocele go away on its own?

Medications, home remedies, and other tips may be successful in providing temporary relief. But without proper treatment, it is highly unlikely that the varicocele will go away on its own.

Why is varicocele more common on the left side?

Varicoceles are more common on the left side because of the anatomy of the body. The male body is designed in such a manner that blood flow to the left side is greater as compared to the right side. This increases the chances of left-sided varicoceles.

Can exercise help in curing varicocele?

Exercise is always the right approach to treat most of the diseases. However, in case of varicoceles, it can actually worsen the scenario and inflict more pain and swelling. Performing yoga and kegel exercises can improve muscle tone, restore blood flow, and help in alleviating the symptoms of varicocele.

What foods help varicocele?

Eating a variety of fruits and vegetables, and including food like whole-grain bread, cereal, rice, pasta, low-fat milk, yogurt, cheese and adding an adequate amount of protein into the diet can help in dealing with a varicocele.

Facts and Statistics Around Varicocele Treatment

  • A painting of 5th Century BC by Riace Bronzes, A- the younger was found out to be modeled with a reproduction of the left varicocele.
  • Varicocele accounts for around 40% of the total cases concerning infertility.

Why chose Pristyn Care for Varicocele Treatment?

  • Pristyn Care houses some of the best interventional radiologists and urologists of the country who have years of experience in delivering surgical treatment of vascular diseases like varicocele, varicose veins, hydrocele, etc. with a proven success rate.
  • Pristyn Care is associated with the top hospitals in Delhi that are equipped with state-of-the-art facilities required to perform advanced surgeries.
  • Urologists/Vascular Surgeons working with Pristyn Care do a thorough consultation in the case of every patient to understand the health condition and then determine the treatment method that will work best.
  • A dedicated ‘care buddy’ is assigned to every patient on the day of the surgery. We strive to make the whole surgical experience for our patients a seamless one. Once you reach the hospital, your dedicated medical attendant or ‘care buddy’ will take care of every paperwork and formality on your behalf.
  • To ease out the commuting process for our patients, we also provide free cab facilities to bring you from home to the hospital and help you return back home after the surgery.
  • A free of cost follow-up is provided to the patients within the first seven days after the surgery.

How to book an appointment with urologists at Pristyn Care?

Every surgery at Pristyn Care is done using the most advanced and USFDA-approved medical technology and equipment. Being one of the leading health tech startups in India, dedicated to simplifying the surgical experience of every patient, we provide end-to-end facilities to our patients and give complete assistance in their treatment journey.

Pristyn Care ensures that a patient has a care-filled and hassle-free experience. You can book an appointment and get in touch with our doctors virtually from the comfort of your home or anywhere by dialing on the given numbers or by filling up the ‘Book Appointment’ form below. 

During the initial consultation, the doctor will have a detailed discussion with you and will carry out a diagnosis of your condition. After a thorough assessment, the doctor will come up with the best treatment plan for you and take you through all the necessary steps to get your varicocele treated in the most effective and efficient way.

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