HealthDay News — Varicocele embolization has a high rate of technical success, with the results being the same regardless of whether the procedure is performed through the neck or groin, according to a study published online July 11 in the Journal of Medical Imaging and Radiation Oncology.

Philipp Riede, from Churchill Hospital in Oxford, U.K., and colleagues identified and analyzed all left-sided varicocele embolizations over a four-year period at their institution with regard to technical success, complications and rates of recurrence. Ninety-five primary left-sided varicocele embolizations were performed by two experienced consultants during the study period.

The researchers found that five cases had a normal initial venogram and five had unsuitable anatomy for embolization. Of the remaining 85 attempted embolizations, 83 were technically successful (98% technical success rate). Recurrence was documented in five cases (6% recurrence rate) and was associated with more complex local anatomy. These findings were consistent with those international published standards (95 to 100 percent technical success rate; 1.6 to 10% recurrence rate). Rates of complications were low, with extravasation reported in 4.7% and temporary pain in 3.5%. No significant differences were seen in terms of radiation dose/screening time, success, or complications for a groin versus neck approach.

“Varicocele embolization is successful with a low complications rate,” the authors write. “Neck and groin access are equally successful with no significant difference in screening time.”

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