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Research Highlights

Cause of Male Infertility Identified

  • July 5, 2011
  • Hit 11681
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After conducting microsurgical varicocelectomy on patients with clinical varicocele, the Male Infertility Team of the Department of Urology at SNU Hospital (headed by Professors KIM Soo Woong and PAICK Jae-Seung) announced on May 17 that they have discovered such treatment to significantly improve the concentration and motility of semen.

Varicocele is a condition usually found in the left scrotum (for anatomical reasons), in which the number of veins going into the scrotum from the testicles increases and they feel like worms to the touch. This is a rather common condition in that it is found in 15% of all men and 40% of infertile men.

Of 268 patients, 169 (63.1%) showed abnormality in parameters such as concentration, motility, or morphology when put through preoperative semen analysis. Out of the 121 patients for whom postoperative analyses were available, the research team explains that 92 (76.0%) of them showed an improvement of at least 20% in at least 1 semen parameter.

The results of this research were published in the May 2011 issue of the internationally renowned journal Urology.

Professor KIM recommended that “It is wise to receive a semen examination when one is diagnosed with varicocele, even if one’s primary reason for visiting the hospital was not related to infertility,” and mentioned that “Even if one’s semen is diagnosed as abnormal, there is a good chance of improvement in semen parameters for most patients upon successful completion of surgery.”

Translated by KIM Eun Young, SNU English Editor
Proofread by Brett Johnson, SNU English Editor
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