Effects of percutaneous varicocele repair on testicular volume: results from a 12-month follow-up

A. Sansone, D. A. Fegatelli, C. Pozza, G. Fattorini, R. Lauretta, M. Minnetti, F. Romanelli, P. Lucatelli, M. Corona, M. Bezzi, F. Lombardo, A. Lenzi, D. Gianfrilli

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Varicocele is a common finding in men. Varicocele correction has been advocated for young patients with testicular hypotrophy, but there is a lack of morphofunctional follow-up data. We assessed whether percutaneous treatment of left varicocele is associated with testicular "catch-up growth" in the following 12 months by retrospectively reviewing data from an electronic database of 10 656 patients followed up in our clinic between 2006 and 2016. We selected all young adults (/=20% difference between left and right testicular volume at baseline, was observed in 26 (22.8%) men. Participants with LTH (mean+/-s.d.: 14.5 +/- 2.7 ml) had lower baseline testicular volume compared to those without LTH (mean+/-s.d.: 15.7 +/- 3.8 ml; P = 0.032). Repeated measures mixed models showed a significant interaction between LTH and time posttreatment when correcting for baseline left testicular volume (beta = 0.114, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.018-0.210, P = 0.020), resulting in a catch-up growth of up to 1.37 ml per year (95% CI: 0.221-2.516). Age at intervention was also associated with reduced testicular volume (-0.072 ml per year, 95% CI: -0.135--0.009; P = 0.024). Percutaneous treatment of left varicocele in young adults with LTH can result in catch-up growth over 1 year of follow-up. The reproductive and psychological implications of these findings need to be confirmed in longer and larger prospective studies.
Original languageEnglish
JournalAsian Journal of Andrology
Publication statusPublished - Dec 25 2018
Externally publishedYes


  • catch-up growth
  • percutaneous treatment
  • testicular hypotrophy
  • testicular ultrasound
  • testicular volume
  • varicocele
  • young adults


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