Dan’s experience: My painful vasectomy!

My wife and I talked for a few years about vasectomy, but she’d been on the pill, and later on IUD and it had been working fine, so we decided she’d use an IUD one more time (the particular one she was using lasts ~5 years). About 5 months ago she went in for the second IUD, and it wouldn’t take. The procedure was very painful, and she had some short-term issues after that she really didn’t want to repeat. The pill was out for other reasons. This started the vasectomy discussion.

At first, I was shocked that it came up so quickly, and was very defensive about it. It didn’t help that she started our discussion/argument from a “well I had kids and it was hard, so you can do this” position, but I later understood why she was ticked that I had an initial “F THAT!” reaction to vasectomy. After a few weeks of on and off arguing, no sex and generally not liking each other, she and I finally had a few long talks over a few nights where she realized how scary this was for me, and that her experiences really had nothing to do with this decision. I also did my homework on the web, paid less attention to the horror stories and more to the overall good news that most people reported (but rarely discussed openly), and decided it made sense. The talk we had centered around the idea that were I to get a vasectomy, it would be first for way more, spontaneous sex and second to keep from having more kids (we have 3 boys). I said if we can’t figure out how to take advantage of this in that way, there’s no value in it for me and I’d rather use a condom or self-service. I think she understood better when I put it in man’s terms. It wasn’t emotional for me, but it was definitely happening to me, not her. I wanted regular, carefree sex in exchange for a seriously shitty time at the hospital and permanent damage to otherwise perfectly functioning gonads. She said it sounded like a business agreement. I couldn’t disagree with that, but it made sense to me and I was comfortable with it when it was clearly put in that way. She also said the idea of me doing this for her/us made her kinda horny. I didn’t understand that at ALL. I tried not to argue.

The procedure day

I was in a horrible mood the day of the operation and the kids steered clear. I hate hospitals, I hate being a patient and am a super healthy guy. I don’t get sick, I don’t see the doctor for anything that isn’t going to kill or disfigure me. In 35 years I’d been to the hospital twice. Once to fix a reoccurring ingrown toenail, and another time to get a cast on a broken wrist. To pick this as my first elective surgery in 15 years was not ideal. I ended up leaving early from work and came home in the afternoon. I just couldn’t get my head into work. The appointment was at 4 that day and concentrating on business was impossible. I hung out at the house and waited for what seemed like years for the time to come.

We arrived at 3:45 at the clinic. I was in sweats and sandals, my wife drove. I went in, reported to the desk, waited 15 minutes (felt like years again) and they called me in at 4 sharp. The doc I’d chosen was a great guy, very cheery, and very experienced (15 years without a single incidence of serious problems or complications). I dropped my sweats and sport/boxer shorts, put on the gown, and got on the table. He cleaned me up, taped things out of the way, I flipped on the TV using the remote, and he went to work.

Now, I don’t know what procedure he used, but damn I should have asked. I know he used the no-scalpel, but HOLY **** did it hurt when he clamped my vas. He knew it would, too, and mentioned it before he went in. The needle was no big deal. I thought it would be, but the idea was way scarier than anything. Did I say it hurt like hell when he clamped the vas?

The right side went quick. I didn’t watch (gross). Way more smoke than I anticipated. Smelled like burning ants with a magnifying glass. The left side….ohhh, the left side. Once he was in on the left, he got a funny look and started mumbling to himself, changing positions, moving around, adjusting the light, etc. About 15 minutes later, on goes the clamp. OMG. Hurts. Then he swears and apologizes, and goes at it again. HOLY…! So now I say “what’s up – this sucks” and he reports that my vas has tissue around it that he couldn’t feel during the consult, but it’s impeding the clamp and he can’t get a grip. After two more tries, he widens the hole in my scrotum, then hits it again, then makes a second hole and tries again, starts to cut and it slips out. Now he’s sweating and I’m in so much pain that my hands have lost feeling from tension. He says “I lost it” while fumbling around with my sack and I’m thinking “What the hell does that mean?” He tells me he needs to get a colleague and heads out of the room.

I’m thinking worst-case scenario and start to absolutely freak out on the table (quietly, after all, I’m a guy and we internalize everything, right?). After a minute or two, doc number 2 comes in the room and they start talking and discussing options. Neither has seen the tissue I have before and they break out the second set of tools. I joke “you guys should have brought a Craftsman set, maybe the right clamp would have been in there…” Nobody laughs. The second doc lifts the table I’m on up into his face and tries HIS tools. Clamp one…ultra pain. Vas slips off the clamp. No good. Clamp two. The room goes totally white for a second from pain. I lift my head and say “I don’t think I can give you many more chances to do that” Doc 2 talks with Doc 1 about random doctor process crap and says “OK let’s try it again”. Starts to dissect, the clamp slips off and he swears. Doc 1 is wiping his brow. Doc 2 looks frustrated. Then Doc 2 gets his “I will not lose” face on, looks at me, and says “You might want to hang on, this is going to hurt, Dan.” AS IF IT DIDN’T ALREADY! I am now sweating like crazy, and so are they, and my left leg is numb from tension and the weird position it needed to be in so they could grip that left side with the vice grip or whatever they were using. I feel him get a hand under my left nut, shove up hard, and shove down on the clamp-like nobody’s business. I shout “Holy sonofa… that hurts!” through my teeth and after what felt like MINUTES while I’m mumbling “geeeeezus christ” under my breath I hear CLICK! Finally, he looks at me and says “Got it. Good to go from here, you’re going to be sore”. Yay. Doc 2 waves and says “Glad I was here!” Yeah. Now go away.

Things were normal from there. Snip, smoke, 2 clips, and some stitches, and I’m off the table putting on my tight shorts and sweats. I hobble out of the place to find my wife, who’s been almost crying, and give her a hug. I ask her what’s up, and check the clock. I’ve been at the table for 2 hours. Damn. We picked up some Vicodin and went home.

After the procedure

At home, it was peas and kingly treatment. I played Xbox and ate pizza on the couch. I had a weird, internally-sore abdomen for quite a while. My nuts were sore but not bad unless I bumped them. The peas I stuffed into my sweats really helped, and I used Ibuprofen for pain. The next day was more of the same, all day. I really didn’t move other than to pee.

Day 3

It’s now day three. I still have a sore abdomen. No bleeding, no bruising, and really no swelling other than around the stitches. I’m mobile, back at work, and not having any real issues. I “tried out the plumbing” when the wife and kids were at the zoo and everything worked fine. I even texted her to exclaim my thrill with the results but she didn’t get it, reporting a “TMI” response. Sex drive is there, probably more so now with all the anticipation of carefree sex. I told my wife after my “test” that she was in for it. She laughed.

We’ll see how the next few days go, but I’m really not feeling much at all other than light soreness in the abdomen, which I’m guessing is from all the clamping and tugging they were doing on the left side.

Day 11

I’m 11 days post-op. No pain during normal daily activities. I can get in and out of my truck and if things get slightly bumped on the seat bolster, there’s no pain, just that man-specific mental note to step higher next time. I do still have some soreness in my abdomen and the groin muscle area, but I attribute that to 2 hours in the chair at maximum tension/stress. It fades with each passing day and I can poke a finger around and find the sore muscles (so I’m pretty sure it’s not testicular pain). I put quite a few walking miles on yesterday at the shopping mall, and during an outing for family pictures without much issue other than sore groin muscles. The only ongoing issue I have is a very occasional twang of pain from my left side. I can’t really tell where it’s coming from, aside from the “left testicle/groin area” and it’s minor. Lasts maybe 2 seconds and it’s gone completely, happens 2-3 times a day, and is barely noticeable.

Last night our 15lb cat jumped into my lap and slammed a foot down on my nuts and it felt just like that. Nothing more or less. The cat was tossed onto the floor.

Sex is totally normal aside from the lousy condoms. “Feels like you’re not wearing one” is a load of crap. Those things are terrible. Ejaculation feels normal, semen amount is roughly the same from what I can tell. No soreness to the touch anymore. I’m hesitant to do too much fumbling around with ’em. I haven’t in the past, not sure why I’d start now.

I wore Under Armour boxer jocks for about 5 days post-op. The soreness was down 50% by day 2. I highly recommend those over a jockstrap. Much more comfortable in comparison. I’m back to regular boxers now.
The incision/entry points are pink and disappearing fast. There’s still a lump around the incision on each side, but it’s half what it was even a few days ago. The worst thing I have to deal with now is the regrowth of hair. It’s not “itchy” like most of the websites suggest. It’s prickly, and without regular repositioning, I get stabbed in the pecker quite often.

At this point, zero regrets but still some apprehension about the future, and the thought of spontaneous sex with no condoms being a reality soon makes me smile; and makes my wife a little frightened. If things change, I’ll report back, but if this is the only post I have and you’re reading it, there are no complications and my wife is probably running away from me at the moment, wondering if it really was a good idea.

Submitted by Dan

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