Vasectomy Reversal Recovery
After the Vasectomy Reversal: Post Operative Pain & Side Effects
A vasectomy reversal procedure does not require an overnight hospital stay and lasts from 3 to 5 hours at an outpatient surgery center. Pain and discomfort after the procedure are very manageable, and may be similar to the pain experienced after the vasectomy. Swelling, bruising or discoloration of the scrotal area is normal and generally does not need a doctor’s attention.
Making a Difference: Vasectomy Reversal Post Op Care
Starting or building a family may require more than just the vasectomy reversal. A good vasectomy reversal surgery is characterized by adequate post-op patient care. Attentive follow-up care is important and for Dr. Bastuba. This attention to detail leads to more timely and successful pregnancies for his patients. Providing an initial evaluation of the female partner and sperm freezing/sperm banking at the time of reversal can make a very significant difference in a couple's success1 (Gerard et al. 2007. Fertility and Sterility).
Immediately after the surgery, ice packs placed on the scrotum area are recommended to reduce any swelling and pain. A prescription pain medication will be available for the first two days after the procedure and can be taken as necessary. Often times after the second day, Tylenol, Motrin or Advil will be sufficient to eliminate discomfort or pain.
Due to the superficial nature of the procedure, risks, post-op discomfort and disruption of normal activities are limited. Patients routinely return back to work in an office setting in approximately three days and physically strenuous work within 4 weeks. Sexual intercourse can be resumed as soon as four weeks after the surgery.
PLEASE NOTE: You must be accompanied by a responsible adult upon discharge and for 24 hours after surgery.
Immediate post-op patient care includes a follow-up consultation to evaluate the healing process at approximately one week and a semen analysis after approximately 4 weeks. Sperm concentration in the ejaculate will be monitored until results are consistent. When good seminal parameters are obtained, Dr. Bastuba recommends that sperm samples be frozen early on, since there is a low but present possibility of a scar down of the reversal2 (Jarow et al. 1995. Journal of Urology).
Possible Vasectomy Reversal Complications
If a patient experiences pain or unusual swelling in the scrotum area, contact Dr. Bastuba immediately. For acute medical problems, someone is always on call. If you are not able to get to Dr. Bastuba directly, you MUST call the main office number directly to contact the physician on call. Routine operative complications may include infections, bleeding and side effects of anesthesia.
Special side-effects for this procedure can include delayed scar down (rate: 2% per year for the first 5 years post-op)3 (Mayo Clinic 2019), moderate swelling, bruising in the area, discoloration in the area or even of the penis, as blood can travel underneath the skin. Other side-effects may include post-operative pain, continued absence of sperm from the ejaculate, continued inability to initiate a pregnancy, high riding testicles, especially if large portions of the vas deferens were removed at time of the initial vasectomy or if it is a redo vasectomy reversal. Even loss of testicular tissue is a possibility. Though Dr. Bastuba has never experienced this in any of his patients, it has been reported in literature related to the procedure. Severe complications that require additional surgery are quite rare.
Nitrous Oxide and the Pro-Nox System
MFS and FCC are introducing the use of nitrous oxide with the Pro-Nox System, a safe and effective analgesic method that has been used in hospitals and medical practices for decades. The system rapidly deploys a 50/50 mix of Oxygen and Nitrous Oxide to help ease a patient's pain and anxiety. This option will now be available for patients undergoing in-office procedural care at MFS and FCC. Learn more about nitrous oxide and the Pro-Nox system today.
- Gerrard ER Jr, Sandlow JI, Oster RA, Burns JR, Box LC, Kolettis PN. 2007. Effect of female partner age on pregnancy rates after vasectomy reversal. Fertility and Sterility. 87(6):1340-4. fertstert.org/article/S0015-0282(06)04491-8/fulltext
- Jarow JP1, Sigman M, Buch JP, Oates RD. 1995. Delayed appearance of sperm after end-to-side vasoepididymostomy. Journal of Urology. 153(4):1156-8. auajournals.org/doi/abs/10.1016/S0022-5347%2801%2967536-0
- Mayo Clinic Staff. Vasectomy, Mayo Clinic, Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and
Research, February 14, 2019, mayoclinic.org/tests-procedures/vasectomy/about/pac-20384580