The idea of a vasectomy can become built up, especially if this is something you have been considering over time. There are questions about pain, what recovery from the procedure will feel like, the potential impact on libido, and if there is any overall risk of complications. These are valid concerns, and we’re always happy to address our patients’ questions. This is why we’ve put together an updated vasectomy FAQ guide, because we wanted to address the top concerns of those who may be on the fence about the procedure and its benefits.
Will I be in pain during and after the procedure?
Simply put, no, you will not experience pain or discomfort during the procedure. The most sensation patients report feeling is a mild “tugging”, but it is normally barely recognizable. After the procedure, you will likely feel the effects of the anesthesia for a few hours until it naturally wears off. From here, you’ll be recovering via rest at home.
What does it feel like to recover from a vasectomy?
Once at home, you may experience some discomfort or soreness, but most men describe this as mild. Patients rely on over-the-counter pain relief medications like ibuprofen as well as things like bags of frozen peas to be placed on the groin. The latter especially is used to prevent swelling and soothe soreness. Most patients only need about 1-3 days of rest before they are comfortable returning to their normal routines. For this reason, it is common for men to schedule their vasectomy procedure at the start of a long weekend so they can go back to work on Monday as usual. The only situation where more time is needed is typically if the patient has a career that involves manual labor, where movement could exacerbate healing.
Will my libido be affected by having a vasectomy?
No, you should not experience any changes to your libido as a result of having a vasectomy. In fact, many patients happily report a boost to their sex life post-vasectomy because of the newly present spontaneity the procedure offers. There is no longer a need to press pause because contraception (like condoms) needs to be organized.
Am I at risk for complications from a vasectomy?
As with any medical procedure, the degree of risk is present but for a vasectomy it is low. Complications are possible, but rare. The majority of men who have a vasectomy with a qualified, experienced and board certified vasectomy surgeon are well taken care of and face a brief recovery period. If you have specific concerns about complications, please be sure to have these addressed by your surgeon during the vasectomy consultation.
How will I know if my vasectomy was successful?
A vasectomy is not proven to be successful until your semen is tested a few months after the procedure. This screening is essential because your semen will be tested for the presence of sperm. If no sperm is present, then the vasectomy was a success and you can proceed with unprotected intercourse in terms of there being no pregnancy risk. Unfortunately, there is a percentage of men who do not attend this follow-up appointment to confirm the success of their vasectomy who later experience a pregnancy with their partner. Patients are strongly encouraged to make attending this screening a priority if pregnancy prevention remains necessary.
Do vasectomies protect against STDs?
No, vasectomies do not offer any protection against STDs. You will still need to use a condom properly when engaging in intercourse with a new partner to minimize transmission risk.
What if I’m almost 100% sure I won’t want children/more children but not exactly there?
Fortunately, sperm freezing is an option for those who want to keep the door open toward future family building. This way, a vasectomy reversal will not be necessary. You would need to proceed with fertility treatment while using frozen sperm that is later thawed.