WHAT IS A VARICOCELE?
Varicocele is the enlargement of the veins, which is present in the scrotum, the scrotum is the loose skin that looks like a sac it contains arteries and veins which supply blood to the reproductive system of the male
This condition is very similar to varicose veins but there is little difference varicocele occurs in the scrotum, it affects the vein known as pampiniform plexus and varicose veins occur in the lower extremities
WHAT ARE THE RISK FACTORS FOR VARICOCELE?
- There are various lifestyle activities that promote unhealthy testicles such as smoking, taking excessive alcohol and coffee, being overweight or obese.
- Sometimes Varicocele may occur due to improper underwear
- It mainly affects the left side, because the flow of blood on the left side is more than on the right side, but it is not necessary that varicocele only occur on the left side sometimes it may occur on both side
- Most affected ages are in between 15 to 25 years.
- If it occurs at the age of or above 40 it may occur due to blockage in larger veins of the abdominal area due to kidney tumor.
WHAT ARE THE COMPLICATIONS OF VARICOCELE?
- The main complication of the varicocele is infertility, 35 to 44% of primary fertility in men occurs due to varicocele. 45 to 81 % with infertility varicocele is the cause of infertility.
- Shrinkage of the testicle - atrophy of the testicle occur due to malfunctioning of the valves
- Social stigma - sometimes it may lead to depression or other mental problems due to infertility or disturbance in the male reproductive organ.
WHAT ARE THE GRADES OF VARICOCELE?
- Grade 1 - in this stage varicocele is not visible or palpable but the doctor may diagnose it by valsalva maneuver.
- Grade 2 -in this stage swelling may be felt without Valsalva maneuver.
- Grade 3 -this is the advanced stage and swelling is easily visible and palpable
WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS OF VARICOCELE?
Usually, varicocele produce fewer symptoms
- Sometimes slight or dull pain may be felt in the area of the groin and scrotum
- In this condition, the veins in the scrotum become enlarged so become palpable and also looks like a bag of worms
- Maybe formation of a lump in the testicles or scrotum
- One testis is larger than the other
- Feeling uncomfortable or dragging in the scrotum area may be seen due to the pooling of blood in the scrotum
- The pain becomes worse when the affected person stands for a long time and become better when lying down
- Pain may worsen in hot weather, due to heavy exercise
- In a varicocele, the fertility of male is affected gradually it decreases the sperm count and motility because the main function of the pampiniform plexus is to cool the arterial blood before it reaches the sperm, but in varicocele, the cooling system is disturbed and prevent the testicle from good quality of sperm
WHAT ARE THE CAUSES OF VARICOCELE?
- The exact cause of the varicocele is unknown but it is believed it may occur due to impaired blood circulation in the scrotum.
- Normally spermatic cord is present in the male reproductive part, spermatic cord contains arteries, veins, nerves, and tubes.
- The main function of the spermatic cord is to provide connection and circulate the blood to and from the testicles.
- veins that are present in the spermatic cord carry the blood flowing from the body back towards the heart, and the spermatic cord also contains a bunch of valves in the veins, valves maintain the flow of blood in one direction and maintain from backflow of the blood.
- In the case of varicocele, these valves become fail, as a result, some flow of the blood goes back, these backed up blood collected in pools in veins, this collection of blood cause stretching of the veins, or swollen of the veins in the scrotum that’s why affected scrotum look bigger than the normal scrotum
DIAGNOSIS OF VARICOCELE
- Diagnosis of the varicocele is made by physical examination of the scrotum, scrotum looks like a bag of worms, which is not tender
- Valsalva maneuver -in this examination doctor ask the patient to take a deep breath and hold it, and bear down, at this time the doctor feel the scrotum and try to find out enlarged veins
- If the varicocele is not diagnosed by physical examination then the abnormal flow of blood is detected by venogram - an X-ray in which a special type of dye is injected into the veins to highlight blood vessels abnormalities
- Sometimes ultrasound of the scrotum is also advised to see the status of the internal structure of the scrotum
TREATMENT OF VARICOCELE
- The treatment of the varicocele depends on the symptoms of the affected male trying for child or not.
- Usually, the one who doesn’t have any symptoms and family is completed they don't need any treatment but if the varicocele is symptomatic then pain killer is advised, but it is not safe and permanent
- Surgical treatment -surgical treatments for varicocele are open surgery and laparoscopic surgery, Percutaneous embolization.
- But all these treatments are not safe and effective
- Homeopathic medicine can reduce the chance of surgery
MANAGEMENT OF VARICOCELE
- Should Wearing an athletic supporter during exercise or prolonged sitting
- Avoid those activities which cause discomfort or increase the pain in the scrotum
- Applying ice packs to the scrotum, because it prevents hyperthermia of the testes, and also improve the testicular function because the low temperature is required to work properly
- Take healthy diet
- Reduce stress because stress also cause an effect on sperm mortality rate
- Educate the patient to avoid varicocele, it is treatable
- Avoid alcohol and drinking because it can also decrease the sperm mortality rate
HOMEOPATHIC MANAGEMENT OF VARICOCELE
There are various homeopathic medicine that help in varicocele, it stimulates the disease-fighting mechanisms of the body, homeopathic medicine not only pain is controlled but also reduce varicosity, reduce the swelling thus decrease the temperature and help in maintaining the normal temperature which is required for the good count of sperm.
But never take homeopathic medicine without proper consultation from a registered homeopathic doctor.
Some homeopathic medicine are pulsatilla ,rhus tox,nux vomica,hamamelis ,lyco ,ruta ,ayrum -met ,calcarea carb.
DO'S AND DON'TS
- Take healthy diet
- Join supportive company
- No need to panic because it is treatable
- Keep hydrated
- Wear athletic undergarments
- Apply cold application
- Avoid heavy weight lifting
- Avoid stress
- Avoid smoking and alcohol.
- Don’t apply ice directly
- Avoid staying in hot temperature