Tests and diagnosis

By Mayo Clinic Staff

Your doctor will conduct a physical exam, which may reveal a nontender mass above your testicle that feels like a bag of worms. If it's large enough, your doctor will be able to feel it. If you have a smaller varicocele, your doctor may ask you to stand, take a deep breath and hold it while you bear down (Valsalva maneuver). This helps your doctor detect abnormal enlargement of the veins.

If the physical exam is inconclusive, your doctor may order a scrotal ultrasound. This test, which uses high-frequency sound waves to create precise images of structures inside your body, may be used to ensure there isn't another reason for your symptoms. In certain cases, further imaging may be recommended to rule out other causes for the varicocele, such as a tumor compressing the spermatic vein.

Dec. 06, 2014

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