Varicocoele in adolescence and testicular cancer in young adulthood

Guy Verhovsky, Moshe Giladi, Dorit Tzur, Arnon Afek, Lital Keinan-Boker, Estela Derazne, Dan Kaminsky, Azik Hoffman, Tomer Erlich, Tzahi Neuman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Elevated intrascrotal temperature has been suggested as a risk factor for testicular cancer, which is the most common neoplasm among young men. Varicocoele was linked to increased intrascrotal temperature, but whether it is associated with testicular cancer is unclear. Objective: To explore the possible association between varicocoele at adolescence and the incidence of testicular cancer at adulthood. Design, setting, and participants: This nationwide, population-based, historical cohort study includes 1,521,661 Israeli male adolescents (mean age 17.5 ± 0.4 years), who were screened for varicocoele during the years 1967–2012, as part of their medical assessment prior to compulsory military service. The mean follow-up was 18 ± 4.2 years. Outcome measurements and statistical analysis: The diagnosis of testicular cancer was ascertained from linkage of records to the the Israeli National Cancer Registry. Survival analysis was applied. Results: In total, 53,210 adolescents were diagnosed with varicocoele stages 2 and 3 prior to military service. Of 1988 (0.13% of the total cohort) men who were diagnosed with testicular cancer during follow-up, 54 (0.1%) had varicocoele prior to military service, while 1934 (99.9%) did not; p = 0.213. The age at cancer diagnosis and the distribution of seminomas versus non-seminomas did not differ significantly between those with and without varicocoele in adolescence. In a multivariable analysis controlling for sociodemographic factors, varicocoele was not associated with testicular cancer; odds ratio = 0.816 (CI: 0.615–1.083). Conclusions: Varicocoele in adolescents was not found to be associated with testicular cancer in young adults. Patient summary: In light of the theoretical association between varicocoele and testicular cancer, we conducted this large population study. We found no association between varicocoele in young adulthood and testicular cancer later in life.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1575-1580
Number of pages6
Issue number8
StatePublished - Nov 2022

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 American Society of Andrology and European Academy of Andrology.


  • adolescence
  • testicular cancer
  • varicocoele

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Urology
  • Endocrinology
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Reproductive Medicine


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