The aim of the present study was to evaluate the influence of physical exercise on seminal parameters of male athletes with varicocele, Sixty healthy male volunteers (athletes and non-athletes, n = 30 + 30) and 60 volunteers affected by varicocele (athletes and non-athletes, n = 30 + 30) were randomly selected for a clinical study. All subjects provided at least two semen samples for routine microscopic analysis. Determinations for basal luteinizing hormone (LH), follicle stimulating hormone (FSH), prolactin, oestradiol, total and free testosterone under resting conditions were also performed. In both groups with varicocele the percentage of total and progressive forward sperm motility and the percentage of normal spermatozoa were significantly reduced, The percentage of both progressive forward motility and normal spermatozoa were significantly lower in athletes with varicocele compared with non-athletes with varicocele (P < 0.05), Only athletes with varicocele had mean left testis volume significantly lower than the contralateral testis (P < 0.05), No modifications of hormonal parameters at rest were observed in any groups. Physical activity might represent an aggravating factor for spermatogenesis in athletes with varicocele, In countries where sport eligibility is granted by an authoritative body, these results suggest the need to establish general medical criteria to guarantee the continuation of an athlete's training whilst at the same time taking care of his reproductive health.
Physical activity as a possible aggravating factor for athletes with varicocele: impact on the semen profile / L., Di Luigi; Gentile, Vincenzo; F., Pigozzi; A., Parisi; D., Giannetti; Romanelli, Francesco. - In: HUMAN REPRODUCTION. - ISSN 0268-1161. - 16:6(2001), pp. 1180-1184. [10.1093/humrep/16.6.1180]