What is it?


A varicocele is like varicose veins of the small veins (blood vessels) next to one testicle (testis) or both testicles (testes).

1 in 7

men around the age of 15 to 25 will experience varicoceles

25 in 100 men

with sperm problems have a varicocele, treating it usually improves sperm quality


can occur after successful treatment

The majority

of varicoceles develop in young men & are not due to a serious condition



Gravity can cause varicocele. The veins are fitted with valves that are meant to keep blood flowing towards the heart and stop it from flowing backwards. This sort of thing happens when you stand up. If the valves leak, the blood hangs around in the veins, which expand to form a varicocele. The same sort of thing happens with varicose veins in the legs. Nobody is sure why the valves stop working.

In older men, a blockage of larger veins in the tummy can cause a varicocele in the scrotum. This is only likely to happen in men aged over 40. It can be a sign that a tumour of the kidney has developed.

I think I have a varicocele

What is the next step?

Book a consultatation with one of our highly experienced doctors. They will be able to give you an accurate diagnosis.

When one of our doctors examines you they will most likely be able to feel the swollen veins in your scrotum.

You may need a colour Doppler ultrasound scan to confirm the diagnosis. Men over 40 are likely to have other tests because of the link with tumours such as kidney cancers.

Often varicoceles don’t need treatment. However, there are some notable exceptions. Persistent discomfort is a good reason, particularly if you do a lot of standing in your job. It’s now generally accepted that varicoceles, heat up the nether regions and affect sperm production. In young infertile men who meet certain criteria, removing the varicocele can help to restore fertility.

Teenagers in whom the testicle is demonstrated to be getting smaller may also benefit from treatment to prevent fertility reduction .

The treatment is to tie the enlarged veins off or inject them with a substance to make them shrink.

Sometimes, the veins left behind also enlarge, so you may have to repeat the treatment.


Learn more

What are the treatments for varicocele



Treatment involves tying off the veins (blood vessels) that are enlarged.

Another method of treatment is to use a special substance injected into the veins to block them. Both methods are usually successful.

We will advise you on the pros and cons of the different techniques in your case.

Please view these PDFs for more detailed information about treatments:

Laparoscopic – keyhole – repair of a varicocele
Open and microsurgical repair of a varicocele
Radiological Embolisation – blocking – of a varicocele

What are the treatment costs?

Consultation costs:

Consultations: £195

Follow up appointments: £150

Treatment costs:

Cost of day case surgery: please contact us for pricing information.

If you have any further queries regarding finance and your treatment cost – then please contact us on 0117 980 4118

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