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Large Varicocele? What now....

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  1. #1
    PrairieGirl
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    Large Varicocele? What now....

    Hello...my DH was dx with azoospermia and now, with a large varicocele on his left testicle on Monday. He is going in for his biopsy sometime soon, but in the meantime, what does this mean for us going forward? Will the biopsy tell us if he's producing sperm at all? How successful are these varicocele surgeries? I am assuming that IVF will be our only option now, right???

    Any help would be great & thanks again,

    PrairieGirl


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  3. #2
    susan123
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    Hi, PrairieGirl,

    Did your DH have any blood work done? FSH and LH normal? Did the doctor find out the cause of the azoozpermia? Is there a blockage?

    My DH was diagnozed with azoospermia and varicocele last July. He had the embolization procedure done in August to fix the varicocele. Three months later, in November, his SA showed 11 sperm. The doctor seemed opstimistic and asked us to redo a SA in Feb. We are hoping to see higher numbers. IVF/ICSI will likely be our only option unless we see a dramatic increase of sperm count (to a few million).

    My DH did not go through the biopsy procedure because we were told that biopsy will just be a random cut on the testicle and the results may not be representative of the entire testicle. So, if biopsy finds sperm, that means your DH is producing some. But even if biopsy does not find anything, your DH may still produce some sperm just that not at the biopsied location.

    We went to see Dr. Schelegel at Cornell in NYC. He's one of the best in the field. I recommend you consult with him.

    Best of luck and I hope this helped.


  4. #3
    PrairieGirl
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    Hi Susan123!

    Thanks very much for the info. My DH's FSH is normal and has a lg varicocele and no sperm in the semen, that's all we really know. On Feb 22 he goes for his biopsy and perhaps we'll know more.

    Your note kind of confirmed what I was thinking: even if a surgery corrects something, he will either maybe produce "a few" (ISCI/IVF); or none (eeek adoption or donor, I suppose) but at any rate, no "natural" pregnancies for us. We're in Canada, so the WAIT TIMES are very long, but we may elect to pay for private care and get in line earlier. I'm 34 and he's 40 and this is our first time!

    PLEASE keep me posted on how things go for you two! If things going well, maybe there's hope for us yet.

    PS -- What does IVF/ICSI cost in NYC/US?

    PrairieGirl


  5. #4
    momto3angels
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    Prarie Girl~

    First, I'm sorry you are facing this...I know first hand how scary all this new ifo is. Almost 4 years ago, DH was diagnosed azeospermic/Involuntary Vasectomy. After a battery of tests to rule out gentic/chromosomal/hormonal issues, etc etc he had a biospy done that showed he does make sperm but it doesn't reach his ejaculate due to scar tissue in his vas-deferns. They aren't sure why he has this scar tissue but it's possible it is from a hernia repair (quadrupal hernia) as a child. Doesn't matter why, really.

    We use ICSI/IVF as our only option and DH's sperm is retrieved via needle aspiration through the testicle (he assures me it sounds worse than it is). We use a clinic out of Abington, PA (one of our RE studied at Cornell NYC and Susan is correct, it's a top facility in the USA and they are leaders in ICSI.

    Costs vary from clinic to clinic~but the general total cost is usually somewhere in the ballpark figure of $8,000 plus medications (between $3-5,000 although I've heard in Canada the medications are cheaper). Sometimes ICSI is more.

    I wish you the best of luck~
    April
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  6. #5
    lambchops
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    Well...

    My hubby had a varicocele on both sides--one was pretty severe. He was uncomfortable, HOT, and generally wanted it fixed. There was hope that the surgery would also help with his morphology issue.

    He had surgery in early 2004. It went well, was medically "successful," but when all was said and done his morph was still bad. That said, he is a much more comfortable man (no more pulling his underwear away from his body). The success rate of varicocele surgery isn't that hot. I've read it's like 50% - 60%. I know that my hubby doesn't regret his donation to the cause of infertility in the least. It wasn't even that painful for him and, mind you, he'd never had surgery or even broken a bone prior to that.

    FWIW, we were able to get pregnant via IUI/clomid (though, like I said his is a morph issue) twice--the first being ectopic and I'm 23 weeks with the second.
    --Shelly (31), DH (32)

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