VARICOCELE...can it effect testosterone?
- 02-08-2007, 06:57 AM
- 02-09-2007, 04:14 AM
- 02-09-2007, 04:17 AM
02-13-2007, 06:02 PM
Hi, forum noob here.
I'd be very interested in hearing how this turns out for you, Hyde12. I believe I may be experiencing some of the same problems as the other people in the thread.
I first noticed that I had a varicocele about 1 year ago. At the time I thought nothing of it. I thought it was normal to have veins around there. Anyway, over last summer I noticed that I was getting very few spontaneous erections... once again thought nothing of it for a while. Then over the course of last fall semester I also noticed that I had stopped consistantly getting morning erections and eventually having them go away. Around the time I noticed this I noticed that my arms and shoulders just didn't seem as strong as they used to even though my exercise routines hadn't changed at all. I was getting tired and fatigued all the time and just generally felt weak. I started eating more, but I was/am still losing weight (but no fat). Basically, I just started feeling like total **** for no apparent reason. Oh, and I've had basically no sex drive.
I'd begun suspecting that I have problems with low testosterone based on 2.5 months or so of reading what I can about the subject. At the beginning of this semester I went to the doctors at the university here and told him about my erection/no libido problem. He asked me a bunch of questions and had me do a pretty extensive blood test. Most everything was either normal or really good except for a few things: 1) I had a slightly low RBC count and Hemacrit. 2)Albumin/Globulin ration was slightly high and (what I had been afraid of) 3) total testosterone of 367 ng/dl. I asked the doctor about it and he told me that my reading was totally normal (the lab range was about 240-820). I'm completely unconvinced, however. The lab range encompasses readings for a huge age range and doesn't take into account what an individual's normal levels are. I was sent away with basically no help for my problems.
Since then (last week Wednesday) I've started taking a zinc suppliment. I've noticed a slight increase in my libido and I've gotten a few weak morning erections, but obviously things still aren't too good. Tomorrow I'm going to call the local clinic to get in to see another doctor about this. I'm going to be sure to mention the varicocele and ask about the possibility of getting it repaired.
I apoligize for this rambling reply, I'm just a bit frustrated.
02-14-2007, 03:32 PM
We are here to help sammowise. It might be too easy to say the varicocele is the cause of all your problems but that would be too easy to say. I think more comprehensive blood work needs done. However varicocele won't be helping matter's that's for sure. Do you have it on one testicle or both?
I have a few questions for you:
1) Did you notice any abnormal testicular changes (shrinkage/atrophy, softness, etc) on the varicocele side?
2) Can you post up complete work including LH/FSH.
3) How big would you class the varicocele (i.e. is it visible easily)?
Your T is low and your symptoms are of low t. Lack of morning erections being a clue. I am in the same boat myself but doing TRT myself and making some improvements in strength and libido/ED.
How do you find your sexual performance/libido in general right now? Can you still get erections?
02-14-2007, 03:46 PM
02-14-2007, 05:22 PM
1) I'm pretty sure it's gotten a bit smaller, but I can't say how long it's been happening. No softness, though.
2) I will bring it up when I go to see the doctor.
3) I'm not sure what different classes are. When you pull it against the scrotum, you can definately see that there's a vein running up the side with a widened area in the middle.
On a day to day basis I have basically no libido. I'm still able to get an erection when sex comes up with my gf, but it's not as hard as I remember.
I'm visiting a urologist this Friday to bring up the general issue of hormones/me feeling like ****. I'll mention the varicocele and I'll try to keep you updated.
02-20-2007, 04:44 AM
Hey guys. I have read pretty much this entire post and i think it's awesome that you guys are helping each other out. I have a varicocele as well and I know they can be very frustrating. I was hoping that I could get your opinions on my situation. I am 21 years old and have a stage 3 varicocele over my left testicle. I've had it for around 4-5 years now. So far i have not experienced any negative effects from it besides the occasional pain. However, I realize that varicoceles cause progressive damage to the testicles so there is a good chance i may have problems in the future. Do you guys think it would be better to have the varicocele repaired before any new problems arise? After reading all of the posts I really want to take a pro-active approach. But i also wanted all of your opinions as well. If you guys were in my situation with no serious problems (no atrophy or lowered testosterone as of yet), would you get it repaired anyway? Just to be safe? Any replies will be GREATLY appreciated.
02-20-2007, 09:47 AM
If you have a stage 3 vericocele like I did, then you probably already have some atrophy in your left testicle.. My urologist sent me to have an ultrasound and they found out it was about a cm. smaller than the right testicle..
The procedure is pretty easy.. You go in and your out in a couple hours... Recovery is pretty quick, I was lifting again in 2 weeks.
02-20-2007, 05:30 PM
I have another two questions for those who have had a procudure done to remove the varicocele:
What type of procudure did you have done?
What costs could one expect for such a procedure?
02-21-2007, 04:45 PM
02-21-2007, 05:35 PM
Nice one hyde. I seen that study before when i was doing research way back, good article.
I believe varicocele causes "dysfunction" rather than failure. My theory is that the actual secreted T takes longer to get into the blood stream due to the weak blood flow. This in turn leads to lower total T. LH will only elevate when the leydig cells suffer from atrophy or the leydig cell array is reduced (due to tissue death).
I need to go back in and get a venogram done (to check for leaking veins) as the varicocele is still causing pain for me and i am getting reflux/back flow in the veins.
I had a doppler ultrasound done and it showed back flow on aspiration which could be causing my problems. The good new's however was that the testicles were both intact with regards to the echo texture or "meat" of the testicles themself. The urologist said i had shrinkage but NOT atrophy. He described atrophy is as being actual tissue changes and death of the testicle cells/tissues.
How are you progressing yourself? No pain or anything from the varicocele? You need to your get your LH up to 3.9, i don't think you've recovered properly.
02-22-2007, 10:54 AM
02-22-2007, 12:08 PM
02-22-2007, 02:18 PM
Difficult to say. Is the pain coming from the veins or spermatic cord or the actual "ball" itself?
02-22-2007, 03:10 PM
it seems like the actual ball itself
02-22-2007, 03:13 PM
02-25-2007, 07:18 AM
Well, they did another ultrasound and said that it looks like I may have epididymitis! This sucks if its not one thing its another!
03-03-2007, 12:22 PM
I finally got my second set of tests back (a week late... they somehow lost them the first time I went in ) So here thery are:
testosterone, total 273 ng/dL 250-1100
testosterone, free 47.7 pg/mL 35.0-155.0
% free testosterone 1.75 1.1-2.8
LH 1.9 mIU/mL 1.5-9.3
FSH 1.4 mIU/mL 1.6-8.0
Prolactin 8.4 ng/mL 2.0-18.0
Based on my (admittedly limited) understanding of the hpta, low LH and FSH probably means my testicles probably aren't the problem, corrent?
The urologist I was seeing said he didn't want to prescribe testosterone replacement since it was still in range. However, he seems to realize that there definately is something wrong, so he's sending my to an endocrinologist instead. (At least he can admit he doesn't know enough about it...)
I'm guessing I should now be looking into the possibility of either 1) pituitary problems of some sort or 2) elevated estrogen levels.
03-03-2007, 12:59 PM
2. Add the E2, DHT, SHBG, Albumin (at least), possibly thyroid and adrenals info.
3. You may want to look into HCG alone first, possibly plus DIM.
03-03-2007, 06:30 PM
Future tests will need to also get E2 estrogen levels.
03-28-2007, 04:04 AM
Well, Im going back to the Urologist Friday becase it seems like the Varicocele is still there and the surgery was about 2 months ago. I dont know how long it typically takes to heal.
03-28-2007, 03:02 PM
The varicoceles never actually go away hyde. Once you have it, it's always there, surgery or not. Basically the surgery does improve matters (this is known) with regards to pain and sometimes sperm/testosterone levels but other times it makes it worse. It's usually best to get it fixed though to out-rule it.
I would request a color doppler ultrasound and also more recent blood work to see how thing's are going. Have your testicles increased in size at all?
03-28-2007, 09:00 PM
I had the surgery in the end of august.. Doc told me it was pretty big and had to remove some vessels.. and that there would be scar tissue left.. Now I think I can feel another varicocele forming so I'm going to make an appointment with the urologist tomorrow.. Should I ask for bloodwork to check test levels? What else should I have checked? last time I didn't know how it effected test and the doctor never said anything and never did bloodwork to check my testosterone.. I had a pretty bad one my left testicle was atrophied so I probably had some lowered test/sperm production..
03-29-2007, 04:56 AM
03-29-2007, 12:36 PM
The testes are also responsive to DHT and that depends on T to make that. So that is a time delay. The levels of T inside the testes are around 100 times that of serum. So there will be more than enough T inside the testes.
HCG could be used to hurry things along, but that is repressive and would set back your own LH response.
As E levels do create a negative feedback on LH, E can impede your progress. While you are taking clomid, you are blinding your hypothalamus to the E levels and the LH levels will raise. There will be increased E and T. Note that the increased E will create increased interference at T receptors.
Note that the T levels will also raise and the E & SHBG levels typically then increase as well. If you stop the clomid suddenly, the hypothalamus will suddenly be exposed to all of that E and again you have a setback in your progress. So you will need to taper off of that clomid just like someone on PCT. One could use an AI to manage that transition as well.
Some guys get emotional from clomid from its estrogenic side effects, something common with some estrogentic SERMs. There are SERMs that do not have those sides. The increased E from a SERM can improve arterial endothelial function and skin tone. But I suspect that the increased E will promote or retain female-like fat patterns that many can shed with effective TRT. E is also now considered the major culprit for prostate enlargement and inflammation.
03-29-2007, 03:13 PM
03-29-2007, 03:20 PM
I have enlarged prostate plus frequent urination problem
My last Oct06 test
Total Estrogens---260pg/mL (40-115)
estrone, serum----78pg/mL (12-72)
Estradiol, sensitive----27pg/mL (3-70)
DHT (dihydrotestosterone---226ng/dL (30-85)
I have since reduced amount of testosterone and added HCG and pregnenolone cream.
What would you advice to lower my TotalE and Estrone, possibly E2.
I am taking 4 pills of (Dual-action) DIM from LEF
and 1000 mg TMG
among other supplements.
The 4 DIM pills I am taking for the last about month and half.
Before it was just 1 or two. I had dark urine. Now is wery clear.
I heard that DIM afects urine color.
03-29-2007, 04:17 PM
Many suggest that E should be closer to 17.
How is the nocturnal and morning wood? Your FT and DHT levels are high. Hormone response is a balance between the T and E. You might be in fine shape in many ways as the E might be overwhelmed by the other hormones.
How much DIM and how long prior to that BW? Did you have any prior BW showing E higher before starting the DIM?
E can be bad for the prostate, but perhaps your high DHT could be a problem as well. What is the history of the BPH relative to the TRT?
Do you take any botanicals for the BPH? This might be quite useful.
03-29-2007, 07:19 PM
............. Total E----E2
10/4/2005 ----///----- 38
8/26/2005 -----53---- 38
5/5/2006 ----- 65-----26
10/31/2006 ----260---- 27
The DHT is high because I stopped using Avodart. With daily Avodart it is DHT=29 (30-85)
I had enlarged prostate before I stared on T supplementation four years ago.
I am taking DIM (made by LEF) for long time (over 2 years), but per their advice I was taking only one pill daily. Now I take four. I did not feel much difference from that increase except that after about a month of use my urine got much lighter and (I think) less smelly.
I have a morning wood rather often, that does not translate to better performance.
Wonder if there is anybody who's prostate got better when their estrogen dropped?
I am taking LEF products,
Super Miraforte With Max Strength Chrysin, 120 Caps
Super MiraForte with Maximum Strength Chrysin
Advanced Natural Prostate Formula With 5-Loxin, 60 Softgels
Advanced Natural Prostate Formula with 5-Loxin
I think not only my E2 is little high but Total E is out of line all together, any sugestions here?
03-29-2007, 09:35 PM
The MiraForte did not work for me, there are a few things that I don't absorb like that.
By one measure, morning wood, your E is not too high.
E dose make the prostate worse for guys with syndrome X who are estrogen dominant. For them, TRT and lowering E will help. But if they are showing signs of cancer, no doc would touch TRT.
Sounds like you are doing a lot already and the next step for lower E would be anastrozole/arimidex. How you feel would be your guide to its effectiveness. How do you feel?
I am not familar with testing of E for guys other that just E2. So I cannot comment.
03-29-2007, 11:53 PM
I do have a cancer in my left tigh, sarcoma.
I had about 6 biopsies, no prostate cancer.
I do have Arimidex, will probably start using it latter.
I want to get first my blood test.
I would like to see changes if any due to my increased DIM intake.
03-30-2007, 05:52 AM
04-01-2007, 04:31 AM
Hello , Megazoid you wrote in one post that coffe and alcohol
can make things worse with varicocele , is this true?
04-01-2007, 07:55 AM
Caffeine based intake will aggrevate the small blood vessels around that area and if you have varicocele you will notice more pain than usual.
Alcholol is toxic to the leydig cells and because varicocele already causes significant damage to the cells on the testicle. It would be wise to avoid both imho.
04-01-2007, 09:09 AM
[QUOTE=Megazoid;768004]Caffeine based intake will aggrevate the small blood vessels around that area and if you have varicocele you will notice more pain than usual.
Alcholol is toxic to the leydig cells and because varicocele already causes significant damage to the cells on the testicle. It would be wise to avoid both imho.[/QUOTE
Just wanted to give a quick update. Ever since the surgery and the short run of clomid inverse of an AI, I am feeling a million times better!
04-01-2007, 09:36 AM
Very, very pleased to hear this Hyde. Great news! I wonder if the HCG will work for me then? Can you still feel the varicocele and do you ever get pain in the area?
04-02-2007, 10:00 AM
04-02-2007, 11:08 AM
1. Somebody who do have a possiblity of recover, but does not recover because of of incorrect approach.
2. Primary, or half way, like me (67yo).
I started four years ago.
For three years I had only blood tests and Androgel available by script plus Arimidex by mail.
Now I have anything I want.
Added HCG (250IU every other day) in an effort to recover my native Testosterone + anything else testis are producing. I am two month into HCG. Testicles recovered size wise.
Do I have a better choice?
04-02-2007, 03:03 PM
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