My Husband Is Embarrassed about Having a Varicocele. How Can I Help Him?

Feb 05, 2024
My Husband Is Embarrassed about Having a Varicocele. How Can I Help Him?
Varicoceles are relatively common and easily treated, but some men don’t want to accept their problem and seek help. Here are some ways to help your husband feel less ashamed.

Problems like hemorrhoids, sexual dysfunction, hernias, and varicoceles all have one thing in common: shame. It can be difficult to push aside feelings of embarrassment regarding the intimate parts of your body, especially when something is wrong. Here’s how to encourage your husband to seek treatment for his varicocele. 

At Apex Endovascular, located in Fort Collins, Colorado, Dr. Shawn Ahmed regularly sees male patients who come for help with a varicocele. He can perform a safe, effective varicocele embolization to address the issue and help your husband feel more confident again.  

An overview of varicoceles

A varicocele is an enlarged blood vessel in the scrotum, similar to a varicose vein, where increased internal pressure makes the vein swell. This can cause the vein to enlarge and lengthen, turning into a squiggly “worm” inside the scrotum.

Varicoceles occur most often on the left side, because the spermatic vein on that side connects at a sharper angle to a smaller vein than on the right. Two additional artery/vein systems provide blood flow to and from the scrotum. If a spermatic vein develops a varicocele, we can treat it to alleviate the issue without affecting necessary blood flow. 

Not all varicoceles are large or problematic. If it’s just a mild problem, your husband may not want to mess with their scrotum because of discomfort around the issue, embarrassment at having their privates examined, or fear of medical procedures in the genital area.

However, large varicoceles often impact male fertility, so treating your husband’s varicocele may be important to your ability to start a family. Additionally, bigger varicoceles can become very uncomfortable and even painful, and in many cases they can reduce the amount of testosterone your husband’s body produces, which he’ll almost certainly be concerned about.

Varicocele treatment

There are two ways to treat a varicocele. The first is through varicocele surgery, which involves accessing the spermatic vein and clipping it, shutting off blood flow and diverting it to other, healthy veins. Surgery is performed either subinguinal (through the groin) or laparoscopically (through tiny incisions in the scrotum itself).

The second option is varicocele embolization. The process is less invasive than surgery. Dr. Ahmed makes only a tiny nick in the scrotum and feeds a thin tube into it, injecting either a small metal coil or a liquid substance into the sporadic vein to block blood flow and render the vein inactive.

Helping your husband get treatment for his varicocele

You can help your husband seek varicocele treatment by doing the following:

Let him know he’s not alone

It’s estimated that 15% of adult men have a varicocele. It’s not a rare condition at all, and it’s certainly nothing to be ashamed or embarrassed about.

Remind him he’s not to blame

Your husband didn’t do anything to cause his varicocele. They don’t happen because of too much or too little sex, masturbation, or sports injuries.

Tell him varicocele treatment can increase fertility and testosterone

Just knowing that there could be an easy way to address issues like infertility or low T could make your husband more likely to seek help.

Encourage him to ask about minimally invasive options

Many men are extremely wary of any medical procedure involving their scrotum or testes. If they know they can go in for a minimally invasive procedure, they may be more willing to seek treatment.

To learn more about varicoceles, schedule a consultation with the team at Apex Endovascular by calling 970-508-8439 or by booking an appointment online