If you are looking for a permanent and safe method of birth control, vasectomy may be right for you. A vasectomy is a surgical procedure that closes off the ends of the vas deferens, which are the tubes that carry sperm out of the body. To perform the vasectomy, your doctor will make a small opening in your scrotum. Some doctors use a scalpel, while others use a special tool for a “no-scalpel vasectomy.” Your doctor will then cut each vas deferens and remove a small section. The ends of the remaining tubes will either be tied off or sealed with heat. A vasectomy is a minor surgical procedure, and most men can resume normal activities within 2-3 days. You may experience some pain, bruising, and minor swelling in your groin after the procedure, but this typically resolves within 1-2 weeks. Here is what you can expect during vasectomy recovery.
Take things slow for the first 24-48 hours and rest as much as possible. Most men can return to office-type work the day after the procedure, but men who do physical work or are on their feet should wait 2-3 days before returning to work. Avoid strenuous activity like bicycle riding, jogging, weight lifting, or aerobic exercise for a week after your procedure or until your doctor says you should.
You can resume sexual activity after a week, but make sure to use a form of birth control until your sperm count is confirmed to be zero by your doctor. Until then, you may still be able to conceive a child.
To help with pain, ice or cold packs placed against your scrotum for 10-20 minutes every 4-6 hours can be helpful. Your doctor may also recommend an over-the-counter pain medication like ibuprofen or acetaminophen. Make sure to take medications as directed by your doctor.
After the procedure, there are no dietary restrictions. You can resume your regular diet right away. Make sure to drink plenty of fluids. If your stomach feels off or upset, stick to a bland diet until you feel well.
Caring for Your Incisions
Taking care of your incision is important to prevent infection. You may resume showering as usual after your procedure. Wash your incision with warm, soapy water and pat it dry. If you have tape strips, leave them on your incision for a week or until they fall off. If you have glue, it will go away on its own.
Watch for Infection
With any procedure, it is essential to watch for any signs of infection that may develop. Signs of infection include increased pain, redness, swelling, or discharge from the surgical site. Contact your doctor right away if you experience any of these symptoms.
Follow Up Appointments
For a vasectomy, it’s critical that you attend any scheduled follow-up appointments. You will need a semen analysis 12 weeks after your procedure to ensure that no sperm are present to prevent pregnancy.
If your family is already the right size and you’re ready for a vasectomy, schedule an appointment today!