At present, it is reasonable to counsel all patients, as well as family members of patients, who have a palpable varicocele about the long-term risks for impaired fertility. Currently, no one can predict with absolute certainty if any adolescent with a varicocele will be at risk for future infertility. Based on existing data, however, it is not reasonable simply to ignore the potential for such a problem until infertility becomes an issue because by that time the chance for reversibility may be lost. It is important to present a balanced discussion because the majority of men with a varicocele will be fertile, and no one is suggesting that all men with a varicocele undergo surgical treatment. Current recommendations for repair are based on the findings of impaired testicular growth and/or spermatogenesis. With early evaluation and selective treatment, however, we should be able to reduce the potential for future fertility problems significantly in adolescents with a varicocele.