Lower levels linked to testicular varicoceles.

Position:Testosterone - Brief article

As many as 15% of men have varicoceles, masses of enlarged and dilated veins in the testicles. There is new evidence that varicoceles, long known to be a cause of male infertility, interfere with the production of testosterone--a crucial hormone to maintaining men's health. There is good news, too: microsurgery can increase testosterone levels in these men.

"Varicoceles are a much more serious problems than previously thought Besides causing low energy, decreased muscle strength, and sexual problems, it is a major risk factor for osteopenia/osteoporosis and can also cause changes in cognitive and psychological function, in particular, depression," warns Marc Goldstein, surgeon-in-chief of Male Reproductive Medicine and surgery at New York-Presbyterian Hospital/Weill Cornell Medical Center.

Varicoceles usually first appear during--or shortly after--puberty, explains Goldstein. "The common wisdom has been to leave them alone unless they are causing pain or infertility, but, as a result of our study, I recommend that teenagers and men with serious...

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