What happens if a varicocele is left untreated?

What happens if a varicocele is left untreated?

Varicocele is a common condition that affects up to 15% of men, causing swelling and enlargement of the veins within the scrotum. While many men with varicoceles may not experience any symptoms, the condition can sometimes cause discomfort, pain, or even infertility. If left untreated, varicoceles can lead to a range of potentially serious complications. It’s important to note that not all varicoceles require treatment, and some men may be able to manage their symptoms through lifestyle changes.

Well to help you out, in this article will explore the potential risks and complications associated with untreated varicoceles. Keep on reading to the end to know about these in detail!

What happens if a varicocele is left untreated?

In this section, we discuss the conditions that can take place and these are as follows:

1. Infertility:

Varicocele is the most common cause of male infertility, with up to 40% of infertile men having the condition. The elevated temperature in the testicles caused by the blood flow impairment resulting from varicocele can damage the sperm, leading to reduced sperm count, motility, and morphology. If left untreated, varicocele can severely affect a man’s ability to father children.

2. Testicular atrophy:

Varicocele can cause testicular atrophy, which is the shrinking of the testicles. The reduced blood flow to the testicles caused by varicocele can lead to a decrease in the size of the testicles and a reduction in their function. Testicular atrophy can also lead to decreased testosterone levels, which can cause a variety of physical and emotional symptoms.

3. Pain:

Varicocele can cause pain or discomfort in the scrotum or testicles, especially when standing or sitting for long periods of time. The pain may be mild or severe and can affect daily activities and quality of life.

4. Hydrocele:

A hydrocele is a buildup of fluid around the testicle, which can be caused by varicocele. The pooling of blood in the veins of the scrotum can cause fluid to leak into the surrounding tissue, leading to the development of a hydrocele.

5. Varicocele-related complications during pregnancy:

Varicocele can cause complications during pregnancy, such as miscarriage or birth defects. The elevated temperature in the testicles caused by varicocele can also affect the quality of the sperm, which can increase the risk of genetic abnormalities in offspring.

6. Increased risk of testicular cancer:

While the exact relationship between varicocele and testicular cancer is unclear, some studies have shown an increased risk of testicular cancer in men with varicocele. This may be due to the impaired blood flow in the testicles caused by varicocele, which can lead to the accumulation of toxins and other harmful substances.

7. Psychological effects:

Varicocele can cause psychological distress in men, especially if it leads to infertility or testicular atrophy. The condition can lead to anxiety, depression, and a decreased quality of life, affecting the individual and their family and loved ones.

Reach Dr. Nikhil Bansal for varicocele treatment!

Dr. Nikhil Bansal is known for his expertise in performing various interventional radiology procedures such as embolization, which is an effective treatment for varicocele. His experience and expertise in Interventional Radiology make him one of the best doctors for varicocele treatment in Jaipur. Patients who seek his care can expect a personalized treatment plan based on their individual needs and the latest medical techniques. If you or someone you know is dealing with varicocele, consider contacting Dr. Nikhil Bansal for the best possible care.


1. What are some general tips for recovering from varicocele treatment?

Some general tips for recovering from varicocele treatment include taking the prescribed medications, resting and avoiding strenuous activities for a few days after the procedure, applying ice packs to the treated area, and wearing scrotal support for a few weeks after the treatment.

2. How long does it take to recover from varicocele treatment?

The recovery time for varicocele treatment depends on the type of treatment used. For non-surgical treatments such as embolization or sclerotherapy, the recovery time is usually shorter, ranging from a few days to a week. However, surgical treatments such as varicocelectomy may take a few weeks to recover fully.

3. Can I resume sexual activities immediately after varicocele treatment?

It is best to wait for a few days after varicocele treatment before resuming sexual activities. This is because sexual activities can cause pressure on the treated area, which may cause pain or discomfort. Your doctor will advise you on when it is safe to resume sexual activities.

4. Are there any foods or activities to avoid during recovery from varicocele treatment?

It is recommended to avoid activities that involve heavy lifting, strenuous exercise, or prolonged sitting for at least two weeks after varicocele treatment. Additionally, it is best to avoid alcohol, tobacco, and caffeine during recovery as they can cause dehydration and increase blood pressure, which can delay the healing process.

5. When should I contact my doctor during the recovery period?

You should contact your doctor immediately if you experience severe pain, bleeding, fever, or signs of infection such as redness, swelling, or discharge from the treated area. Additionally, if you have any concerns or questions about your recovery, do not hesitate to contact your doctor.