Varicoceles Treatment in Cleveland, OH
What are Varicoceles?
An expansive network of arteries and veins exist to carry blood throughout the body, including the testicles and scrotum. Veins located by your testicles are subject to the same type of circulatory issues that can be seen in the legs to cause varicose veins. However, enlarged veins of the scrotum are referred to uniquely as varicoceles.
Problems Caused by Varicoceles
It is estimated that roughly 15% of men have a varicocele, especially between the ages of 15 and 25. Varicoceles usually occur on the left side, but in some cases can be present on both sides.
While varicoceles can often be a completely benign condition that do not lead to any sort of complications, they can also result in issues with a man’s reproductive abilities. Such issues can include decreased sperm production as well as decreased sperm quality, which usually result in problems with fertility.
Symptoms of Varicoceles
Most men with varicoceles do not notice any signs or symptoms of the condition, though it is possible to have a dull, achy pain. This pain may worsen throughout the day, increase during periods of activity, or subside when the individual is lying down on his back.
Because varicoceles rarely present detectable symptoms, most men are unaware that they have a varicocele until they are noticed during an annual physical exam, an ultrasound, or when they begin to experience difficulties in fathering a child. If you begin to experience any type of abnormalities within the testicles, please contact Dr. Thirumavalavan right away for a consultation.
Reasons to Treat your Varicocele
If a man’s varicocele is not causing any pain or issues with his fertility, then treatment may not be needed. We recommend varicocele repair to men who have infertility, and abnormalities in their semen, or for men who have pain from the varicocele. Varicocele repair has been proven to improve sperm counts and sperm quality. Specifically, total sperm counts, sperm motility (the ability of your sperm to swim well), sperm morphology (the % of your sperm that have a normal shape), and sperm DNA quality all improve after varicocele repair. Repair also improves natural pregnancy rates, and you can have better success rates with assisted reproductive technologies, such as intrauterine insemination or in vitro fertilization. Lastly, we offer varicocele repair to men with pain on the side of the varicocele. Patients’ pain can get significantly better after varicocele repair.
Varicocele Repair Surgery with Dr. Thirumavalavan
Many techniques have been used to fix varicoceles – we perform microsurgical varicocele repair, which is the gold standard. After you go to sleep, a small incision is made in your groin. The veins from your testicle are visualized using a microscope. Taking great care to identify and avoid injury to the testicular artery, the dilated veins are identified and permanently tied off to stop the poor blood flow. Though rare, risks of varicocele repair include a hydrocele (fluid collection around the testicle), bruising, or injury to the artery to the testicle.
After your surgery, you will have stitches and skin glue on your incision(s). The stitches will dissolve on their own. Some discomfort and swelling in the area of incision and in the groin/testicles are not unusual and should subside within 1 -2 weeks. Strenuous exercise (for example, lifting more than 10lbs, etc.) should be avoided for 2 weeks after your procedure.
We will see you in 2 weeks after your surgery, to check on your wound. Subsequently, you will have a sperm analysis in 3 months, as it takes that long to see improvements in sperm counts after varicocele repair.