Clinical significance of subclinical varicocelectomy in male infertility: systematic review and meta-analysis

H. J. Kim, J. T. Seo, K. J. Kim, H. Ahn, J. Y. Jeong, J. H. Kim, S. H. Song, J. H. Jung

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

38 Citations (Scopus)


Recent meta-analysis by the Cochrane collaboration concluded that treatment of varicocele may improve an infertile couple's chance of pregnancy. However, there has been no consensus on the management of subclinical varicocele. Therefore, we determine the impact of varicocele treatment on semen parameters and pregnancy rate in men with subclinical varicocele. The randomised controlled trials that assessed the presence and/or treatment of subclinical varicocele were included for systematic review and meta-analysis. Random effect model was used to calculate the weighted mean difference of semen parameters and odds ratio of pregnancy rates. Seven trials with 548 participants, 276 in subclinical varicocelectomy and 272 in no-treatment or clomiphene citrate subjects, were included. Although there was also no statistically significant difference in pregnancy rate (OR 1.29, 95% CI 0.99–1.67), surgical treatment resulted in statistically significant improvements on forward progressive sperm motility (MD 3.94, 95% CI 1.24–6.65). However, the evidence is not enough to allow final conclusions because the quality of included studies is very low and further research is needed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)654-661
Number of pages8
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2016 Aug 1

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015 Blackwell Verlag GmbH

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Endocrinology
  • Urology


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