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How does a varicocele cause infertility?

This question was asked in Irvine, California and has 2 answer(s) as of 05/08/2013.
My wife and I have been trying to have a baby for the past year, but I was recently diagnosed with a varicocele, which I guess is the reason we haven't been able to conceive. I was curious about why exactly this problem occurs, as well as why it is linked to decreased fertility. Does fertility return to 100% after the varicocele is repaired?

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Doctors Answers (2)

This is a question for your urologist.

The spermatozoa develop and function better at temperatures slightly below the normal body temperature. A varicocele is a collection of varicose veins in the scrotum which usually develop because of venous blood refluxing down one of the testicular veins. The collection of blood in the varicocele warms the testicle and the adjacent structures filled with spermatozoa. The warmer environment around the testicle results in a lower male fertility. When male infertility is diagnosed in association with a varicocele, treatment of the varicocele usually restores fertility.

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