The male reproductive system consists of multiple ducts where both sperm and sperm are formed and transported. All these ducts may have cystic or neoplastic anomalies that alter their structure. Want to know what a spermatocele is? Keep reading!
A spermatocele is nothing but a soft, painless cyst located in the epididymis. The latter is a tube at the top and back of the testicle, in which newly formed sperm mature and are stored.
multiple Education They state that it is a common alteration, especially in older men. However, usually does not cause relevant clinical manifestations and its diagnosis is usually made by accident.
The epididymis is made up of microscopic tubes that carry newly formed sperm. It is possible that blockage of one of these ducts is the cause of the spermatocele. However, scientists have not yet determined the precise origin.
Another possible cause of this type of cyst in a child is genetic alterations, although it is a rare malformation in the first years of life. The risk factors for spermatocele are also not fully understood.
It is believed that He use of a medicine called diethylstilbestrol During pregnancy increases the risk. This drug was indicated to prevent miscarriages and other types of complications, but its legal prescription was suspended in 1971, due to its association with vaginal cancer.
Symptoms of a spermatocele
Spermatoceles do not cause clinical manifestations in most cases. These are painless cysts that maintain a stable size and are non-cancerous.
Despite everything, there are cases in which the spermatoceles increase their size considerably. Therefore, it is possible that they cause some signs, such as the following:
- Pressure at the base of the penis.
- Redness of the scrotum.
- Swelling behind or on the testicle.
- Discomfort or pain in the affected testicle.
- Possible enlargement of the scrotum.
- Feeling of heaviness in the affected testicle.
It is important to note that a spermatocele it usually does not cause changes in ejaculation or pain in the penis. Therefore, in case of these symptoms, it is better to consult a specialist as soon as possible.
The easiest and fastest way to detect a spermatocele is through a physical exam.. The doctor must carefully palpate each testicle to find the change. Although the cyst is not painful, it is possible to have some discomfort during the evaluation.
Once the lump in the scrotum is detected, the doctor should instruct the execution of some tests to confirm the etiology. Some of the necessary tests are:
- Transillumination: the specialist will shine a direct light on the scrotum and observe the change. A spermatocele will be diagnosed when light indicates that it is a cyst with liquid contents, instead of a solid tumor.
- Testicular ultrasound: ultrasonography is a useful method when transillumination is inconclusive. This method uses sound waves to reconstruct the testicular image and evaluate the tumor and its characteristics.
Treatment of a spermatocele
Most spermatoceles are asymptomatic, therefore They do not require any kind of correction. according to the protocols of the recent search. Painful cysts can be treated with over-the-counter pain relievers, such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen.
Your doctor might recommend certain procedures to remove the cyst. However, it must be taken into account that fertility may be affected, so it must be carefully evaluated whether or not you want to have children in the future.
The first invasive procedure is spermatocelectomy, which It is nothing more than the surgical resection of the spermatocele. This is an outpatient procedure in which an incision is made in the scrotum and the cyst located in the epididymis is removed.
The other treatment available for a spermatocele is aspiration with or without sclerotherapy.. The doctor will insert a special needle and draw the fluid out of the cyst. Sclerotherapy is used to heal the sac with an irritant.
Both spermatocelectomy and aspiration can damage the epididymis and vas deferens, therefore it affected fertility. This could be a big problem for young people who want to have children.
For this reason, it is best for young men to undergo sperm conservation before opting for this type of treatment. Sperm banks could also be an option, although it is best to consult a specialist about the methods available.
An alteration with few complications
Spermatoceles are cysts with few clinical manifestations or complications. A man can spend his whole life with one without even realizing it. They also do not affect fertility at any time except after treatment.
However, there are cases where they can grow and generate various inconveniences. Regardless, it’s best to see a doctor if you notice a lump in your scrotum. Only then can an accurate diagnosis be made and the appropriate approach initiated.
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