A varicocele is actually a varicose vein (an abnormally swollen vein) that forms in the network of veins that run from the testicles. This occurs in about 15% of boys age 13 to 20 and is not considered serious. In fact, varicoceles rarely cause symptoms, and are typically detected during a boy's regular checkup, if the doctor performs a testicular exam. Usually no treatment is prescribed, but on rare occasion, the vein may be repaired with surgery.

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