VARICOCELE...can it effect testosterone?
- 01-09-2007, 03:58 PM
- 01-22-2007, 06:49 AM
01-22-2007, 09:37 AM
Well Hyde, i got my varicocele fixed a few months ago and still no improvements this far. The problem is you can't actually "fix" varicoceles because they have a high chance of recoccuring and because the operation doesn't always work right. I have heard from 3 guy's in the past month (via email) that had normal sized testicles but varicoceles repaired 2/3 years ago and still have low t now with no proper explanation. All three were under 30.
Varicocele causes progressive testicular damage and sometimes the only answer is repairing it but still needing TRT for life. HCG sometimes works but i think the best plan is to use TRT + HCG (maybe Test Cyp + HCG) or a compound cream. Nothing can really be done for varicocele sufferers, i've met a few of them and almost all are on TRT now. HCG might be worth giving a go to spark any life left out of your testicles.
01-22-2007, 12:24 PM
Did you try clomid yet? Have you been on TRT the whole time? I tried the andro gel for about a week (5grams) and I felt worse then before so I stopped taking it. Im going to get this thing fixed and do a post cycle therapy type protocal.Originally Posted by Megazoid
01-22-2007, 12:28 PM
Megazoid, I was looking at your last posts and it seems as though you were on andro gel after you got your varicocle fixed. This could be why you have seen no improvements in testicle function because they are shut down and will not recover. Have you tried Tormifiene?
01-22-2007, 04:06 PM
Much like you Hyde, i was on TRT only for about a month. I took an allergic skin reaction towards both Androgel and Testim. So i stopped TRT and went solo. However about a day before stopping TRT i got blood taken/tested and my LH/FSH were still in the normal range (LH = 2.4, FSH = 2.1) so all the 50mg a day did was drop my LH from 3.9 to 2.4.
I know for a fact that my LH/FSH are back in range now as they always went back up after stopping TRT.
The fact is varicoceles cause progressive testicular damage and only in some situations does this reverse but it appears not to be normal.
01-23-2007, 06:48 AM
When you stopped using androgel for that month did you use any post cycle therapy? If you didnt then your testicles would have a hard time recovering even if you didnt have the varicocele. HCG is not a proper post cycle therapy and from what I have read on here and other places it can cause shutdown on its own. You need to get some Clomid/Nolvadex or some Tormifene. You wont get much post cycle therapy advice on here, but you will in the post cycle therapy section of this forum. I believe that with God's help after this surgery that my testicles will heal. Im not just going to sit back and kiss my natural Testosterone good bye.Originally Posted by Megazoid
01-23-2007, 11:19 AM
I got a blood test run about a week later and my LH had went back to 3.9 on it's own (the original level before TRT).
I do respect your attitude but the problem really is that varicoceles are misunderstood and cause all sort's of testicular problems including internal fibrosis, blood vessel problems, over-heating, etc. Because our nut's have atrophied, damage has been done. This isn't like what secondary hypogonadism suffers experience but actual tissue death (and in most cases cell death). The LeyDig cells dysfunction and cause spikes and valleys in the the T levels.
I've spent almost 4 month so far researching this because much like you i didn't want to give up and had hope, hower this faded when almost all research and urologists pointed to the fact that re-growth dosen't happen in varicocele patients due to the progressive damage caused by varicoceles. It "might" (just "might" be possible) to reverse some of this using HCG.
In "some" cases HCG will regain size and function. If you are young and your testicles are still somewhat in-tact then HCG will work in about 5 out of 10 cases. One urologist suggested 500iu 3 times a week, while another suggested 250iu daily for 3/6 weeks then followed by Nolvadex (20mg) for 4 weeks to restart the HPTA.
I have a few questions for you.
1) How long have you had the varicoceles for?
2) How much atrophy/shrinkage have you experienced since the varicoceles?
3) Have you noticed any skin changes on your scrotum/penis?
4) Is your scrotum constantly "tight" all the time?
5) Can you post recent blood work?
I will keep you posted on my own findings too.
01-23-2007, 07:34 PM
1) I have had my varicocele for about 6 months nowOriginally Posted by Megazoid
2)I have a little atrophy in my left testicle, but not too bad
3)no skin changes but it seems to be kind of lifeless if you know what I mean
4)not all the time. my testicles still drop, but not like they used to
5)my last total test reading was 303 I cant remember what the fsh and lh were, but they were withing range
how do you feel on TRT?
01-23-2007, 07:58 PM
Strangely i had my varicocele for about 6 months too and it caused all manner of problems, in a sentence, my nut's went nut's!
When i went on Androgel i felt pretty good. I had a strange reaction though with my skin (Rash) and not to mention my HPTA still kicking about. I didn't get any shutdown and my total T went back up to 25.1 and my LH/FSH still remained in a very normal (if not 'highish') range. I was getting good benefits from TRT but i didn't like the fact that i was flushing alot and the skin reactions. Otherwise i did notice erection improvements and morning wood more often. My penis also plumped back out to it's normal size and wasn't shrunk up (not sure if you are experiencing this also?).
The problem with TRT is that your nut sack get's like ultra tight all the time and if you have a varicocele it can hurt like hell.
If i am doing TRT again i will be using HCG to promote testicular size and health improvements and to prevent the tight sack thing.
In general are your testicles normal size (2+ inches)? Do they feel different at all (weight, size, density, etc)?
How large is the varicocele (roughly)?
Was your LH around 3/4 (this is considered the "normal level", 2 or below isn't normal)?
I am considering running either Test E + HCG (2/3 times a week) or Testim/Androgel + HCG (3 times a week or more).
Like you i want my natural levels back but this might not be fully possible unless given time so i need to compensate.
01-24-2007, 07:47 AM
Ok, I found my blood work...my LH was 2.8 and FSH 3.2 and I even got prolactin which was 9.5 (normal)Originally Posted by Megazoid
The varicocele is pretty big and it seems like its getting bigger all the time. The right side was good before but within the last week, I noticed some dilation there too. I hopt im not getting one on the right side. To be honest I think my varicocele was caused by pro hormone use. The reason I think this is because when my body started to recover after the last cycle, it did it really fast and the valves in my nuts didnt have time to open. I dont know if this is the case but its just a theory. Another thing that I think could have caused it is ROS (reactive oxygen species) and that is a toxic by product of nitric oxide. I was using No2 type products for about a year straight without taking anything to fight the free radical build up. I did some research and found that ROS is one of the causes of Varicoceles! To answer your question do you mean Is each nut 2-2 1/2 inches? For the week that I was on TRT I felt like crap (even worse than before) I think that only 5g of andro gel is only going to get you to the 300 range, which I was already in, so i think that i actually need more like 10g of andro gel. Im going back to the urologist this morning and I pray to God that he can do something for me because I have never been this depressed in my whole life.
01-24-2007, 10:00 AM
I can relate 110% with you Hyde, this is an absolute nightmare and i wish it would stop too. Depression is the right word to use, my body is in a shambles because of 6 months of suffering from this low t (or "low normal" t). Did you run HCG/Clomid end of cycle?
I can assure you when i find the answers i will let you know but i have been researching like hell for the past 5/6 months trying to find suitable ways of treating this and coming up with very little except that many guy's with varicoceles (fixed or not) still have low t later on in life. You didn't tell me your age or your previous results before the varicocele did damage?
My problem is that my right testicle was already atrophied and dysfunctional from being undescended so i was relying on the one and when that atrophied too i knew i would be stumped and in for trouble.
Your LH is rather low to be honest. 3.9 is the "normal" level that most guy's have. However the low LH might be a good sign for you as no damage has been done to the leydig cells most likely.
How is your E2? Low E2 can cause problems like high E2 and more to the point cause "more" problems for guy's like us because low e2 causes blood flow issue as well as sperm production issues.
Being honest with you i don't think the varicocele is your only worry, i feel your piturity hasn't been restarted properly because your LH/FSH should be higher. This might explain the atrophy too. Have you tried running HCG/Clomid to restart fully and recover from the atrophy?
Alot of guy's can have varicoceles for literally years (even bi-laterial) and have no problems, so i have really started to question why this happened to me. I believe a domino effect occurs in some cases (like mine) and i praying that HCG is the answer (and hopefully for you too).
Varicoceles cannot start large, they always start really small, mine was undetectable to start with. When i got the operation for mine i seen it on the monitor and it looked like a tentacle coming down from my kidney! It messess the veins up high up so in turn your theory could be right about ROS.
I have an appointment with a urologist to check that this operation has worked because i am not 100% convinced. I am getting new blood work done next week to check my current levels. I think they are about the same as before.
The fact you have noticed problems on the right side is pointing more towards my own theory. Low T and low E2 in turn effect blood flow around the body (slow it down somewhat) when the ratio is effected this might explain why i got atrophy and why you might be getting another varicocele. I actually noticed my nut's felt alot better when on androgel and i wasn't getting atrophy that i could notice. Maybe it helped blood flow by raising my total up to 25nmol (about 650/700)?
Maybe we can deal with this together? I am sure the both of us can figure this out. I am seriously thinking about either running HCG daily (250iu daily) alongside Testim at either 5 or 10mg to see how i get on for a few months. I want to try and get back nut size and reap the benefits of TRT until my nut's come back to normal size. I considered running HCG alone but my fear is that it will cause shutdown and 250 might be enough to keep my t up throughout the day. I might try this for a few months till my nut's recover.
Part of me think's my right nut is still working somewhat but i had a very small varicocele on it about 2 year's ago and it went away on it's own. I am going to get this checked and my other testicle to make sure the operation has worked. I don't mind if i need another one but would prefer not to of course.
In the mean time stack up on vit e and c to help the veins and cut out all caffeine based drinks and alcholol, these will aggrevate the small veins in the testicle and lead to problems. I take Vit e at 800iu daily to prevent leydig cell fibrosis occuring and even put on some Vit E cream onto my scrotum to help.
01-24-2007, 12:54 PM
Cool. Thanks for all your help and advice. I got back from the urologist and he gave me 3 options to fix my varicocele. one was a cut to the sack another was to the groin and the last one (the one that sounds the best) was the embolization. He said that I would have to come back and talk to his partner for the embolization because he usually does not do the embolizations but he does the groin cut. He went on to tell me that going in through the groin is a good idea, but you run the risk of getting the artery to the testicle severed and that would ruin that testicle forever. So, I am going to try to get the embolization done because that seems like it has the best reviews. Which procedure did you have done? which one do you recommend? I am 28 years old and I really do not want to have low T for the rest of my life. After my last cycle I made the mistake of only using ATD so it messed up my HPTA. I did use Toremifine for a while and that helped really well for about a week and then it stopped working. If this keeps up im going to get some Proviron. At least I will have a sex drive. I dont think that I suffer from low E2. I think my E2 is high because I am really starting to gain some fat around my lower abs and sides and I feel bloated. Im taking Rebound Reloaded and Dim right now, but neither of those are doing anything. I would be careful if I were you with the HCG because it is not your natural LH and at high doses over long periods of time it can kill the leydig cells and it can convert to estrogen just like androgel. Tormifene seems to be the best thing out there right now and it has been the only thing that has at least worked for a little while with me.
01-24-2007, 06:48 PM
This is so strange this came up. I was diagnosed with a varicocele when I was 15. I'm almost 50, so I've had it most of my life.
But, when the doctor told me it was like, no big deal, it just a varicocele. I ended up going on HRT when I was only 38. I suspect due to my inability to build muscle for the 20 years I had been working out at that time I have always had low test levels.
No one ever treated it like it was a big deal during any of the hundreds of physicals I have had over the years and no one ever suggested surgery to repair it.
01-25-2007, 06:51 AM
I have been laughed at by doctors too for suggesting that a varicocele will cause low testosterone. I dont understand how they can think otherwise because a varicocele will degrade the testicle and most of your testosterone is produced in the testes so obviously they wont put out the same test as a healthy testicle. The key to getting it fixed is to make sure you tell the doc that it hurts really bad. Mine really does hurt bad. Do you have a large varicocele that can be felt by hand? Those are the worst ones and that is like the one that I have.Originally Posted by DragonRider
01-26-2007, 10:01 AM
Sorry for the late reply Hyde, i have been snowed under with house work and decorating (of all things!).
Basically the veins from the testicle run down from your left kidney/adrenal to your testicle which put's it at risk from toxic by products (hence why the blood supply needs to be functional and your T optimized for best effect).
You might notice some guy's who are secondary experience increases in testicular size without HCG this could be todo with the improved cardiovascular function as well as the fact that estridol and T/E ratio is very important for sperm production and in turn testicular function (i have low E2 which could cause sperm production problems in itself). HCG might be the answer but i want to get the blood flow evaluated on ultrasound to fully rule out any testicular problems.
The problem is that when a varicocele occurs on the left testicle it tends to work it's way up towards the kidney so you end up with a tentacle size vein strangulated and wirey all the way up to your kidney (hence why the varicocele get's bigger and bigger). Varicocele embolization tends to mean "plugging" the vein at kidney level to stop blood going down that way and being redirected to healthy veins. For me this removed the varicocele in my sack and the vein seemed to die off, however i am not 100% convinced the operation has worked and going back to see my urologist to find out if it might be worth entering the scrotum and tying the vein off to be sure NOTHING can be flowing around in there and giving the testicle a chance at least to work well. Maybe he can put in more coils or something. I will keep you posted on my progress.
I recommend the varicocele embolization for relief of varicocele pain and discomfort but i cannot confirm if i have noticed an increase in testosterone or sperm production since the operation (nor testicular size). My nut's for lack of a better explination are going nut's! My left one is changing size and shape throughout the day and it's causing all manner of problems for me i think. They are basically going from full to atrophied for some reason due to bad blood flow. I believe T/DHT/E have a huge role to play in this too though. Only time we will tell when i run HCG + TRT to see how thing's work out (or try to restart). I am going to get fresh blood work done next week and i will post up before and after blood work.
The best options to go for regarding varicocele operations are probably in this order:
Varicocele Ligitation (Scotal)
Realistcally you are suffering from similar symptoms to a secondary hypogonadism sufferer. Because you LH is low (should be at 3+ to be normal) in theory if you get this back up to 3.9/4 (Which mine is at and i have never done steriods or anything) then you could double you T (roughly) up to about 600. The varicocele WILL cause some degree of leydig cell dysfunction but after this is fixed i am sure you will go back up to 700+ if your HPTA is back and functional (i.e. LH at 4).
Let me know how you get on and if you have any more questions.
01-26-2007, 10:06 AM
Very large and obvious, but never hurt.Originally Posted by Hyde12
Doctors don't have to live with it, so they don't care.
01-26-2007, 11:12 AM
====================Originally Posted by Megazoid
Newer done steroid or T supplementation at that time.
Now I am on Androgel.
I complained about ED, sore testicles when not using tight panties.
First test ordered by local doctor, done at LabCorp (7/10/03)
Testosterone, serum=255 (241-827) ng/dL
I then went to university hospital,
there the director of sex health told me that I have varicocele.
He ordered tests and I done them at local hospital's lab (Jan8/04)
E2=24 (0-52) pg/mL
LU=5.7 (1.5-9.3) miu/mL
Prolactin=7.2 (2.1-17.7) ng/mL
Testosterone=311 (241-827) ng/dL
and at Quest Diagnostics
Free Testosterone (EIA)=6.0(2.6-64.8) pg/mL
What should have been my best line of action if I could start it from scratch again?
At this time 7.5gram of Androgel and two pills of DIM+I3C,
DIM-vise equal to one pill of Indolplex with DIM
keeps me operating semi-ok.
My testicles are shrunk and scrotum is tight, but no pain.
01-26-2007, 12:42 PM
I would have gotten the varicocele fixed first and then see how you felt. I dont understand the logic of the Urologists when they say that varicoceles do not affect Testosterone.Originally Posted by JanSz
01-26-2007, 03:21 PM
I am going to be setting up a website highlighting the dangers and being a one-stop-source for varicocele sufferers. Hopefully we can get the message across with time.
JazSz, it sound's like the varicocele might have been the cause of your low t. However you are an older dude too so it might be a combination of factors. Did you suffer any atrophy at all or were your nut's normal size before you started TRT? How long did you go "suffering" (with the ED/Libido and general Low t) before you went onto TRT?
In a realistic world i would have got the varicoceles fixed and see how you got on. Even now it might be worth fixing them then trying HCG if your LH/FSH aren't elevated due to testicular failure.
Why do you say you function "semi-ok" JazSz? I thought you were feeling really good on your TRT plan and were getting erections when you wanted them (is the libido still there?).
Hyde, would you be up for helping me with the site (moderating the forum, helping out, etc)?
01-26-2007, 05:40 PM
Yes, most likely the varicocele is a reason for my low T.Originally Posted by Megazoid
I think my nuts were about the same size as usual, up until I started on Androgel, now small and soft.
I think my nuts were about right throughout my life.
One possible exception from normal was, and still is, that my right nut travels up the sack, right before orgasm.
It is uncomfortable enough that when it happens I have to stop and push it back, so it drops back into sack.
I had erection problems for about 3 years.
Now on Androgel it mostly works, underline mostly, not always, and that is with Cialis.
I never had libido problem, looking at pretty girl works me up, mentally.
It is quite confusing now, to get erection I need mechanical friction and there is time delay, even when everything works.
My wife is accustomed to the routine by now, still I have to concentrate a lot on the business at hand,
any distraction and erection may be gone.
I guess if I tried with somebody else it may not work unless she was really patient.
Few minutes ago I made appointment to see my new doctor (osteopath), next Tuesday.
That will be my second visit with him. His nurse, my dancing friend, said that he want to learn TRT.
So there is my big chance. I am hoping for change for better when I start HCG.
My ejaculate is almost non-existing,
I should probably do the other hormone, FSH, forgot its name, do not know brand names, dose, frequency, details. Somebody fill me in, please.
I will also ask him for script for Armour Thyroid and Cortef.
Actually I already ordered Armour over internet an already have Isocort,
but with the script my prescription plan will get a chance at footing my bills.
Wish there was some detailed discussion on GH here.
Last time I checked my (IGF-1)=120 (75-212) (Sep2/05)
01-22-2007, 05:07 PM , Dr John said
1.35 Mg of GH per day & Igf-1 levels still sub optimal
Any doctor with much experience will tell you not to chase IGF-1 levels.
Once you have passed 2IU, what's the use?
You have to treat the patient, not a laboratory printout.
We normally produce about 0.5IU of GH per day.
That may be a good starter.
01-26-2007, 07:44 PM
HCG is known to improve ejaculate volume but it will result in that thin, watery like ejaculate which isn't too great.
I am only 23 year's old and also have to really work to get erections. I am not sure if thryoid/adrenals have a role to play int his too though. My thyroid is in the shape with no problems (if anything, i am a little underweight).
What were your latest labs like JazSz?
01-26-2007, 11:23 PM
HCG basicaly replaces missing LH.Originally Posted by Megazoid
I was taking about Follicle stimulating hormone (FSH).
Supposedly it works better than HCG, and increases ejaculate volume, something I could use.
In wikipedia I was able to find:
Follicle-stimulating hormone - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
"FSH is available mixed with LH in the form of Pergonal, and other more purified forms of urinary gonadotropins as well as in a pure forms as recombinant FSH (Gonal F, Follistim). "
If there was discussion on this, FSH, topic, please point me to it.
I would like to know dose, frequency, product names any other particulars.
I did my last test in Oct/06, at LabCorp, it was a short test.
As you see I got that useless FreeT, and they skipped SHBG, just so I was not able to do my own calculations. I was on 10grams of Androgel. I have since reduced to 7.5mg, I think it works better. I also take one extra, for the total of two pills of
LEF version of DIM+I3C. They have two of them, I use this one:
Dual-Action Cruciferous Vegetable Extract With Resveratrol & Cat's Claw, 60 Vegetarian Capsules
Total Estrogens------------------------------ ---260 pg/mL (40-115) LE’s Optimal Range: 40–77 pg/mL
estrone, serum------------------------------- ----78 pg/mL (12-72)
Estradiol, sensitive--------------------------- ----27 pg/mL (3-70) LE’s Optimal Range: 10–30 pg/mL
Progesterone---------------------------------- ----1.4 ng/dL (0.3-1.2)
Pregnenolone---------------------------------- ----23 ng/dL (10–200) LE’s Optimal Range: 100–170 ng/dL
Total Testosterone-------------------------- ---932 ng/dL (241-827) LE’s Optimal Range 500–827 ng/dL
Free Testosterone--------------------------- --36.5 pg/mL (6.6-18.1) LE’s Optimal Range: 18–26.5 pg/mL
DHT (dihydrotestosterone)--------------- ---226 ng/dL (30-85) LE’s Optimal Range: 30–50 ng/dL
prolactin, serum----------------------------- ----4.2 ng/dL (2.1-17.7) LE’s Optimal Range: 2.1–5 ng/mL
sex hormone–binding globulin (SHBG), serum nmol/L 13–71 LE’s Optimal Range: Lower part of normal range is desirable
(TSH)-------------------------- --1.89 uIU/mL (0.350-5.5) LE’s Optimal Range: 0.35 to 2.1 mIU/mL TSH good if below 1.5(Gary Field) 1.425
Free (T3)----------------- --2.9 pg/mL (2.3-4.2) (3.67-4.2)per Crisgj2 =4.3-(4.2-2.3)/3=3.67 3.825 <--FT3 start of upper 25%
Total T3---------- ---104 ng/dL (85-205) MESO-Rx - View Single Post - For those of you on thyroid medication 3.667 <--FT3 start of upper 33%
Free T4(direct)--------------- --1.37 ng/dL (0.61-1.76) Top of the FT4 and upper third for FT3 is what I look for 3.350 <--FT3 start of upper 50%
DHEA Sulfate------------------------------------- ---369 ng/dL (42-290) LE’s Optimal Range: 500-640 ug/dL
Cortisol (7:20)AM --24.2 µg/dL (4.3-22.4)
Cortisol (3:20)PM ----6.9 µg/dL (3.1-16.7)
Hematocrit---------------------------------------- --45.6 % (36-50)
01-28-2007, 11:18 AM
Ok, Im getting my varicocele surgery next Thursday. They are going to be doing the one in which they go through the groin. I will keep everyone posted of the outcome. Megazoid, I think the website is a great idea and I would love to help with it. People need to get the truth about these things and not put off the repair because they do effect Testosterone levels.
01-29-2007, 09:39 AM
I wish you the best luck with your surgery Hyde and hope get a fast and effective recovery. Because your T is low this will effect your "recovery" time and i would strongly advise topping yourself on some TRT to get into a good 500/700 range so you recover faster. This operation will involve cutting muscle and this will generate at roughly 70% rate in normal t level men. While this will supress your HPTA further, in the long run i feel running TRT + HCG might be the answer after your surgery, this way you can reap the benfits of TRT while helping your balls to heal and grow back. The atrophy IS for the most part
Your HPTA is not firing out enough signals and you're balls won't be responding well so you should probably do TRT for a few months alongside HCG to get them back working again. After this you can try coming off everything using a post cycle therapy style cycle and restarting properly.
01-29-2007, 11:48 AM
Thanks for the reply Dr John.
The main reason i have had to resort to self-treatment is because doctors are failing to help me in my country and i have spent thosands trying to get proper treatment. I have spent the past 6 months researching the subject of varicoceles and the effects on steriod secreation and testicular dysfunction caused by the varicocele. I am trying to raise awareness of the information i have gained regarding this subject and help others.
However you are right, i am not in a position to give out information regarding TRT so i will stay out of this one.
01-29-2007, 12:23 PM
Dr John, i have a few questions for you which i hope you don't mind me asking.
1) Have you ever been presented with a patient that has varicocele induced testicular atrophy and normal LH/FSH levels but low T?
2) Have you ever used HCG on a varicocele sufferer and had good results with regards to improvements in testicular health and size (getting back "normal" testicular size for example)?
3) Have you ever been able to recover a varicocele suffer into gaining high T levels without TRT, using HCG + PCT style recovery (clomid/nolva)?
Special thanks for your help and input on this matter.
01-30-2007, 06:42 AM
We need more doctors out there like yourself. The Urologists that I've seen told me Varicoceles wont effect T Even though the testicle on the side with the varicocele is Atrophied.Originally Posted by Dr. John
01-30-2007, 10:29 AM
01-30-2007, 12:28 PM
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