Background: Coronary artery ectasia (CAE) is defined as localized or diffuse non-obstructive lesions of the epicardial coronary arteries with a luminal dilation exceeding the 1.5-fold of normal adjacent segment or vessel diameter. Varicocele is the dilatation of the pampiniform plexus. Recently increased prevalence of peripheral varicose veins has been shown in patients with CAE. In this study we aimed to assess the prevalence of varicocele, which is dilatation of another venous system, in patients with CAE.
Materials and methods: Thirty-five male consecutive patients with coronary artery ectasia in combination with or without coronary artery disease (CAD) and 63 male, age-matched patients with coronary artery disease were included in the study. All patients were evaluated for the presence of varicocele.
Results: Twenty-one patients with CAE were found to have varicocele (62% of group I patients). In patients with CAD, 24 patients (38%) were found to have varicocele. The difference between the two groups in respect to presence of varicocele was statistically significant (P=0.02; odds ratio=1.57; 95% confidence interval 1.05- 2.3).
Conclusion: We have shown that patients with coronary artery ectasia have an increased prevalence of varicocele compared to those with coronary artery disease. The mechanism underlying coronary artery ectasia might further increase the prevalence of varicocele in susceptible patients.