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Vasectomy - your experience

(47 Posts)
Frecklesandspecs Sun 01-Dec-13 18:23:55

Hi Dh has an appt this week with Dr as he wants the snip. (just had our third)
I'm fine with it but was reading up on it last night and reading some negative stories.
Can anyone share please. Did you/dp have pvp pain afterwards and for how long? How long did he need off work and was it sucessfull?
What are your thoughts now?

TallulahTwinkle Sun 01-Dec-13 18:36:35

Watching this thread as in same boat - Nhs choices has horror stories!

scaevola Sun 01-Dec-13 18:36:45

The OP went really well for DH - not much pain, easy healing. He toolkno time off work (arranged it over the weekend).

Our snag is that about 11months on he still isn't fully clear.

winkywinkola Sun 01-Dec-13 18:40:04

Dh had it done. He said it was fine apart from the smell of burning.

Bit uncomfortable for a couple of days afters. He said the reversal was far far worse. confused so think long and be absolutely sure it's what you want.

scaevola Sun 01-Dec-13 18:40:25

He's my thread about the amazing non-clearing DH - which includes some posts from a MNetter for whom it all wine horribly wrong.

Even thought vasectomy does not go into a major body cavity, and is usually done under local, it's still surgery with a complications rate of about 10%.

scaevola Sun 01-Dec-13 18:41:46

'wine' (Freudian slip?) - meant "went"

HotelTangoFoxtrotUniform Sun 01-Dec-13 18:46:34

DH said his was uncomfortable afterwards rather than painful and slept for most of the afternoon after he had it done. He was back at work 48 hours later and had the all clear 12 weeks later. It really was so straightforward we wish he'd done it years ago.

FromGirders Sun 01-Dec-13 18:49:59

Dh had it done on Monday, back to work Tuesday, out dancing on friday. No bother at all.

mrsseed Sun 01-Dec-13 18:54:38

Dh had it on a Friday, back to work Monday, could have gone back on the Sunday. I watched,it was fascinating and from what I saw, there is no way the little buggers are getting out!

Frecklesandspecs Sun 01-Dec-13 18:57:33

Thankyou, I was reading the stories on the nhs page too twinkle.
What about specimens ? Do they just get sent in and how long did you have to get them in?

Scavola - I'm off to read your thread.

TippiShagpile Sun 01-Dec-13 19:00:44

Dh had it a while ago (after I got pg with coil).

It's been amazing. I am so chilled and relaxed so we have much more sex and are much more relaxed about it. Well worth doing IMHO.

HotelTangoFoxtrotUniform Sun 01-Dec-13 20:59:23

DH sent his in at 8 and 12 weeks and was told shortly after the second one that all was successful. I was a bit surprised that he just sent samples in via Royal Mail, but that's what the clinic wanted so that's what he did.

scaevola Sun 01-Dec-13 21:03:19

The samples depend on you provider.

As the are checking for complete absence of sperm, I doesn't need to be a fresh sample: DH was done by Marie Stopes and they check (by post!) at 16 and 18 weeks: if both clear, then you can abandon other contraceptive. If not, then you keep going at 4 week intervals until 2 consecutive ones are clear (or not, in our case). If only a very small number of broken looking ones remin, then they start talking about a fresh, warm sample (where we are now) - if they can establish only dead/non-motile junk, then they can give clearance. If motile sperm remain, it's deemed a filed procedure and will have to be redone.

Some providers start testing a bit earlier than Marie Stopes - maybe at 12 and 16 weeks.

Results are usually really quick - a day or two from sample being received.

TheFuzz Mon 02-Dec-13 09:30:07

Never again. We both regret it. Mine went horribly wrong and I'm still in a mess after over a year !

There is a 10% risk of PVP - no-one tells you this.

As an operation, it should be painless, smelly though becuase of the burning that is done. The first half of my operation was fine, no pain. Second was exreamly painful - I even warned the Doctor could feel it before he started zapping, but he carried on. Then he severed a blood vessel.

Lots of pain, lots of swelling, even A&E visit it was that bad. Ended up off work 5 weeks. Operating GP denied any occurance of PVP. Only when I was referred to Urology did them mention the high number of cases.

Still in pain months after the surgery. Sex life was almost non-existant, maybe once every 6-8 weeks.

Referred for an epididymectomy on the 'damaged side'. That's quite a nasty surgery where the whole testicle is pulled out of a large incision in the scrotum, the epididimis removed, and then it's stitched back in place to the scrotum along the incision so it can't move. The surgeon also tidied up the mess the GP made.

Second surgery was much less painful afterwards than the vasectomy.

Some of my pain has gone, mainly the mess the GP made. I still wake in pain every day in both sides, which means I have to get up. This fades within an hour. Still get low level aches and pains, and it's still causing me discomfort at night, so I end up sleeping on the setee a number of nights a week.

Sex life is still rubbish. Fortunately my wife is very understanding, but it's certainly not what either of us expected. We have no worries about pregnancy as I was clear on the first test - no need to rush a sample in, this was dropped off at the surgery, then sent away to the local hospital for tests. Came back clear. Sample done after 16 weeks.

Down sides, I'm getting quite exhausted in the evenings, and I have a low libido, so not so sure if my testosterone levels are up the shoot following the second surgery as I have a lot of scar tissue now on the operated on testicle.

I won't be having the other one done.

There is basically nothing that can be done now other than taking medication, which I won't take. No referral to Urology for a few months.

Plus side, is the damage the GP did has been sorted out. Just left with PVP now.

90% do go without a fuss, but for that 10% you take a risk of seriously damaging your sex life, and you'll be lumbered with a miserable partner. It's a gamble, and it doesn't matter how fit or healthy you are, it has no bearing on who gets it.

I've spoken to quite a few men about it, and only 1 chap mentioned that his doctor was honest about the risks, so he and his wife decided not to do it.

I'll also not recommend that the woman is steralised either, as the surgery is more invasive. If you don't want hormonal contraception (a reason I decided to go ahead) then stick with condoms.

10% risk of PVP is way too high. Surgically it's simple, but zero research goes into PVP, and if you get it, then you really are up the creek without a paddle. There is very little that can be done, and an epididimectomy only has a 50% success, but they will only operate on one at a time dut to the high risk of losing it due to the surgery. Mine is hanging on in there, but its still painful and swollen.

Sorry to put a downer on it, but please way up the risks. If it goes well, as in 90% of cases, your partner should be fine after a few days. If it goes on for more than a week, then start worrying.

winkywinkola Mon 02-Dec-13 11:06:33

TheFuzz, that sounds horrendous. I'm so sorry to hear what you've been and are going through.

Have you made a complaint about that GP who made a mess in the first place? What if he/she is still doing it?

I hope you see some improvement week to week. sad

TheFuzz Mon 02-Dec-13 11:43:52

I made a complaint last year, but it was just brushed off. I am waiting until I see my consultant following the epididymectomy to see what he has to say about the surgery (I didn't see him after the procedure) and the mess he found. The GP left me in alot of pain.

The down side is that you sign a disclaimer and it mentions the rare chance of PVPS - I remember it saying 1 in 1000, not 100 TIMES more likely. I even asked the GP before about what would happen if I got PVPS, complete denial and I'd have to speak to my Urologist (what Urologist - ohh how I laugh now).

Depending upon what the Consultant says about the operation, I may take a legal route. Still won't fix me up though. The GP is still providing this service. Aftercare was shocking, complete denial about the issues.

Urology have been very good, but also VERY honest about the situation. One of the nurses said they see many men coming back in for further surgery following vasectomy at GP practices.

The surgeon all along has said I'm likely to be left with pain. By removing the epididimis this should remove the swelling as the testicle still produced sperm which is effectively blocked. This structure has now been removed and my testicle should stop producing sperm, the only thing it's any good for is testosterone, hence why they tend to do this procedure rather than removing the testicle.

Even removing the testicles, does not guarantee removal of pain, as there are lots of nerves surrounding the VAS, and it's very easy for these to be damaged - hence how PVPS starts.

My other option was reversal, but that's £3k plus, and despite all the pain, I didn't want to be firing live rounds anymore, and I could well have still been in pain, but having to think about contraception again. I was also doubtful that would have worked given the damage the doc did.

90% still go well though, just be aware that PVPS is very difficult to treat as it's not understood how it's caused and why.

The biggest problem is men. We don't talk about things, hence why it's been hushed up so much. Only this year has the NHS Choices site specifically said about the 10% chance of PVPS - wasn't mentioned when I read up about it last summer. It previously said it was very rare. It's not. Urology are kept busy fixing the mess.

Please make sure you either go along to the GP before the referral with your husband, and press the GP on these issues. He will probably lie, or indeed not be upto date. My GP thought it was rare, until I mentioned NHS Choices 10%.

Best be informed before making the decision. I still think it was the right thing to do in a committed relationship, but I just wish I wasn't lied to so much.

That's my opinion, lots of procedures go well, but I just want to highlight that there are some very real risks from such a minor procedure. The pain after the vasectomy was certainly much more painful than having my bollock pulled out, bits chopped off it, then fixed back in place. The scar is impressive for such a small part of the body.

Knowing this now, my procedure must have gone wrong.

Frecklesandspecs Tue 03-Dec-13 16:53:13

Thanks fuzz. I am just looking in on thread. Will reply later when I'm sat down.

TheFuzz Wed 04-Dec-13 09:02:55

Looks like I've killed the thread just like this operation is killing my relationship eh ?

My wife has been supportive, but how long can one go on in a marriage with little sex ? She might be better off with someone else.

Spend another night on the setee and yet another morning woken in agony.

The doctors advise there is nothing they can do as my last operation was to see if it would relieve the PVPS. It's done some relief, but certainly not the PVPS.

I feel like this is a dead end, and I've nowhere to turn. Whilst my pain is bad, it's nothing like some men have had, and doctors can't cure it.

Just how long can a relationship survive ? I don't feel like a man anymore.

Vasectomy is a simple operation, "best 30 minutes work a husband may do", but my god can it devastate your relationship.

Don't do it !

TheFuzz Wed 04-Dec-13 09:04:29

Oh and I'll add this has lead to two months off sick in the last year. Fortunately my employer is OK and I get sick pay, but if you are not in that situation, could you afford to lose two months pay ?

winkywinkola Wed 04-Dec-13 23:05:40

I'm so sorry, Fuzz. And you thought you were only doing the responsible thing.

deepfriedsage Wed 04-Dec-13 23:16:22

Fuzz, you need better pain relief.

Frecklesandspecs Thu 05-Dec-13 08:49:50

Sorry fuzz, I had our 3rd 3 weeks ago and have not had a moment to sit down and get back to you. Your experience sounds awful. Its really quite worrying. Dh went to Dr yesterday who (woman Dr) told him it wasa geat idea and has referred him to bypas. When I asked if she had discussed any long term pain after he said no not at all- I wanted to show him yoyr reply but he may get annoyed at me for discussing here. Do you have your story anywhere else. I think I'm more worried than him about this. I don't know if he has read up on it or not.

TheFuzz Thu 05-Dec-13 09:17:55

I would refer him to NHS choices website. I am there as is someone who has been in terrible pain. PVPS can either come on immediately or some time after. Mine was immediately - sometimes that's better as you know what it is, rather than muddling through.

90% of the operations go well, but the shocking thing is if you get PVPS they can't treat it and you are snookered.

Freckles the doctor is seriously telling lies, and it's damn irresponsible. NHS Choices now say 10% have long term pain, and so does my consultant urologist and he says it's very difficult to treat as it's a 'symptom' but they don't know the cause.

I've had some very frank conversations with my consultant and I've even asked about having them both removed. His answer was that getting rid won't guarantee relief.

Even the epididimectomy only has a 50% success. Mine has been partially successful in that it's removed some pain in my groin, but I'm still in the same pain in both testicles, as well as pain from the surgery site.

I'm not saying don't do it, but what annoys me is the blatent lies the GP's are telling - I've even put my own GP right referring them to the NHS Choices information.

I'd prefer people to make an informed choice. The procedure isn't a problem, it's what can happen after and the 'oh erm, we can't help you' response.

As for pain relief, nothing touches it. I've been offered stuff like gabapentin but I've totally refused it - I've tried it in the past and that shit just turnes you into a zombie. I'd rather have the pain.

I also do a lot of cycling - you can imagine how painful that is.

Best of luck, but make sure you are aware of the risks, it's not nice.

Thisisaghostlyeuphemism Thu 05-Dec-13 11:01:59

DH also had a disaster.

Doctor did NOT warn us of any long term consequences, yet when we went to A and E (3 times!) we were told there that between 10-15% of men have 'complications'.

The Fuzz, I've messaged you.

Frecklesandspecs Thu 05-Dec-13 20:25:48

I'll try and get him to read some more up on it. Certainly worrying considering that nothing can be done if it does go wrong. I am going to try and have a look at alternatives now I think.
I'm glad your wife has been supportive. I guess you feel as a man you are letting her down but youcan't hold youself to blame. I hope you see some light at the end of the tunnel soon.
Do you know how long tje pvp can last ?

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