Kidney Disease and Urology

Can varicocele cause problems with erections?

A Answers (1)

  • ADr. Rachel Ashby, MD, OBGYN (Obstetrics & Gynecology), answered on behalf of Brigham and Women's Hospital
    A varicocele is a dilation of the spermatic veins in the scrotum. Varicoceles are found in many men, but with a higher frequency in the population of men with infertility. The condition may cause a slight increase in the temperature of the scrotum, which is the proposed mechanism of the sperm abnormalities. Men are frequently asymptomatic from a varicocele, but symptoms can include: mild pain, testicular atrophy or shrinking of the testicle, and possible decreased fertility. Erectile dysfunction is not typically related to the presence of a varicocele. If a man is experiencing erectile dysfunction, a full medical work-up is strongly recommended.
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