Do Spermatoceles Cause Infertility?

Do Spermatoceles Cause Infertility?

Spermatoceles are whitish fluid-filled sacs that grow in the epididymis - a small tube located in the upper testicles that stores and transports sperm. They vary in size and are generally harmless. But sometimes these cysts can cause discomforts due to their increased size. In such a situation, one may need medical intervention.

Effect of Spermatoceles on Fertility

Most spermatoceles show no symptoms and one may not be able to identify them through a visual examination. They are benign and do not generally interrupt in one's daily activities. In some cases, spermatoceles grow large in size causing heaviness and pain. They also can grow large enough to push the testes up into the groin. Though this happens rarely, in such cases, spermatocele causes infertility.

Causes of Spermatocele

Experts are still not clear about what causes spermatocele. Studies have shown that accumulation of sperm in the epididymis could be one of the reasons. There is no valid proof for this statement and research is still pursuing the exact cause of this medical condition.


There are various treatment options available to cure this medical condition which includes oral medication, aspiration procedure, sclerotherapy, and surgery. Of these, the aspiration technique involves removal of fluid through needles inserted in the cyst.

The major drawback of this technique is that cyst can refill and spermatocele can come back. In such a situation, sclerotherapy is performed. In this, after draining the fluid, the doctor fills the sac with scar tissues. Using this therapy the risk of developing spermatocele is reduced. Though this can cure the condition, it can damage the epididymis and cause infertility. For this reason, these treatment options are usually recommended for patients who do not want father a child.