What are Varicoceles?
A varicocele is a term used to describe abnormal enlargement of the veins within the scrotum. The veins carry blood from the various body organs back to the heart. Typically, veins have valves that prevent blood backflow. When the valves in the veins within the scrotum don’t work as they should, blood tends to collect in the scrotum.
Signs and Symptoms of Varicoceles
Most often, Varicoceles have no symptoms or signs. As mentioned earlier, you will barely notice it. However, although rarely, the condition might cause pain. When it does cause pain, it might;
- Switch from a sharp to a dull discomfort
- Become worse over the day
- Increase when due to physical exertion or standing for extended periods
- Pain that goes away when you lie on your back
- Impaired infertility
Over time, varicoceles may become more enlarged and become noticeable. Varicoceles are often described as looking like a “bag of worms” sometimes, the condition may also cause a swollen testicle, most often on the left side.
When Should You Seek a Doctor?
Since symptoms do not accompany varicocele, it often does not require treatment. In some cases, varicoceles are discovered during a fertility evaluation. However, you should see a doctor if you notice any of the following.
- Pain or swelling in the scrotum
- Discover a mass on the scrotum
- You are having a problem with your fertility
- When you notice that one of your testicles is larger than the other
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