Each year in the United States, 500,000 men choose to undergo a vasectomy to prevent pregnancy. While this procedure is relatively simple, there’s still some recovery after your vasectomy, which makes planning ahead a good idea.
At Arizona Urology, our team of men’s health experts routinely performs vasectomies at our practice, and we use the latest surgical techniques whenever possible to speed up your recovery and reduce your risks.
If you’re contemplating a vasectomy or you've already scheduled one with us, here’s a look at what you can expect during your recovery.
Home the same day
Whether we perform a traditional vasectomy or a no-scalpel vasectomy, we do both on an outpatient basis, which means you’re free to return home the same day. Rest assured, we properly anesthetize the area for your comfort so you won’t feel a thing during the procedure.
Once we’re satisfied that everything went well, we send you home with complete aftercare instructions. Here are the highlights.
The first few days
When you get home and the local anesthesia begins to wear off, you may feel some pain or discomfort at the site of the surgery. In most cases, over-the-counter medications can easily handle the discomfort, and icing the area can go a long way toward providing more comfort (a great hack is using a bag of frozen peas for this).
In addition to numbing the area, using cold therapy can also reduce any swelling that may develop, which is perfectly normal. You may notice some bruising as well, which is also normal and usually short-lived.
We do ask that you take it easy for a day or two after your vasectomy and avoid moving around too much, which can lead to more swelling. And speaking of moving around, you should also wear tight, comfortable underwear that hold everything in place to avoid jostling.
As for showering, you should be able to get the area wet after a day or two, according to your aftercare instructions.
The first week
Beyond the first few days after your vasectomy, please note that we ask that you avoid any strenuous activities, especially lifting, for at least a week after your procedure.
When it comes to having sex again, you’re the best judge of that, but we recommend that you wait at least a few days to a week.
When it’s safe to have unprotected sex
The goal of a vasectomy is to prevent sperm from mixing in with your ejaculate, which we accomplish by closing off your vas deferens. It’s important to note that sperm may still exist on the other side of the new closure, so you should wait until your follow-up appointments where we check for the presence of sperm.
In most cases, it takes time for your ejaculate to become sperm-free so it’s important that you use alternative birth control methods during this time. Once we test your ejaculate and find no sperm, you’re free to enjoy the results of your vasectomy.
When there’s cause for concern
During the first few days after your vasectomy, you should be on alert for any signs of infection, which include fever, pus, or inflammation at the surgical site. Complications are relatively rare after a vasectomy, but if you experience anything worrisome, please contact us right away.
If you have more questions about recovering from a vasectomy, contact one of our locations in Goodyear, Glendale, Gilbert, or Phoenix, Arizona, to set up an appointment.