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Success Rate High for Varicocele Embolization

Groin, neck approaches same in terms of radiation dose/screening time, success, complications

THURSDAY, July 21, 2016 (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 percent technical success rate). Recurrence was documented in five cases (6 percent 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 percent recurrence rate). Rates of complications were low, with extravasation reported in 4.7 percent and temporary pain in 3.5 percent. 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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