Should varicocele be treated only when you want to have children or from an early age?
Varicocele has a negative influence both on growth and on the future function of the testicle, so even when there are no indications for surgical treatment, it is advisable to carry out periodic andrological checks.
The term varicocele refers to the dilation of the veins of the testicle. It is one of the most frequent pathologies of the male genital system and is observed almost exclusively in the prepubertal and pubertal period (11-19 years). The treatment of this pathology is surgical and is performed only in particular conditions such as: presence of pain and / or a sense of weight, reduced size of the affected testicle, palpable or visible varicocele (3rd and 4th degree) or when, once the development is finished pubertal, an "impairment of fertility is ascertained.
The incidence of varicocele varies from 2 to 15% in school-age children and in 93% of cases it affects the left testicle, due to the anatomical structure of the venous system. The causes of varicocele are many: in the primary forms, probably a congenital weakness of the venous walls associated with incontinence of the valves, while, more rarely as happens in secondary varicocele, a compression of the renal vein.
This disease is an important but reversible cause of low fertility or infertility. Cellular damage is probably due to the long venous stasis resulting in the accumulation of toxic substances, reduction of available oxygen and increase in local temperature.
1. Available on the website: Bambino Gesù Children's Hospital
2. Ministry of Health. Varicocele