Varicocele: Overview

What is a varicocele?

A varicocele is an abnormality or a widening in the veins around the testicle. The blood backs up in the veins, causing swelling that is similar to the varicose veins that develop in the legs. Varicoceles usually develop slowly and are generally not harmful or painful, but they can occasionally lead to problems with fertility.

What causes varicoceles?

There is no known cause.

Who gets varicoceles?

Varicoceles are most commonly found in males between the ages of 12 and 25 years. There are no known genetic links.