Varicoceles occur when the blood vessels enlarge within the scrotum -- the loose bag of skin that contains the testicles. Varicoceles are similar to varicose veins, and many men do not experience any problematic symptoms. The condition develops gradually and is usually harmless. In many cases, a man with varicoceles won't require any treatment. In some cases, the condition can lead to fertility issues, but most symptoms of varicoceles are easy to treat.
Some men who develop varicoceles experience a sharp or dull pain that may feel worse when standing or exercising. Pain caused by varicoceles often gets worse as the day goes on. Some men find that their pain improves if they lie down. If the varicocele becomes very large, it may be visible or palpable within the scrotum. The condition can also cause one of the testicles to swell, almost always on the left side.
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