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4 months after vasectomy - Still hopeful


#1

I posted some in the “8 weeks - still up and down” thread, but wanted to document my full story here in case it helps someone.

Vasectomy was Jan 29, 2016. Procedure was fine except for a period of about 2 minutes during which I felt extremely nauseous. Was assured it was normal and I wasn’t going to vomit. I didn’t.

Weeks 1 to 3 - Felt good really. Almost no soreness from surgery, didn’t really use any meds. I was back to lifting weights (squatting, deadlifting, etc.) by week two. This might have been a mistake.

Week 3 - I started to get dull pain and a kind of crushed testicle feeling on the left side. Kind of felt like my underwear/pants were pinching my testicle, but it wasn’t fixable. Wasn’t really sore to the touch (still am not). Also got little twinges of pain here and there in both groins. Got worse as the day went on and was kind of hot and swollen by night time. Working out actually makes it feel better. Iced and heated and took ibuprofen to no effect.

Saw the urologist who performed the surgery and he examined me and said I had a granuloma. Put me on antibiotics and told me to call him back if it wasn’t better in a week. Also said he had someone who had similar problem as me about once a month (funny how he never mentioned that rate of complication previously). Assured me it wasn’t PVPS (he had warned me about that at the consultation, with a rate of like 6 in 1,000 or something). Very positive and sure of himself that it was going to go away in no time.

Week 4 to 10 - No real change in this time. I wake up with a general fragile/achy feeling that is very manageable. They are not really sensitive to touch at all, which is odd. They feel like they are being pinched and are achy, but if I squeeze or manipulate them it doesn’t hurt worse. I can work and have lifted weights consistently during this time. Just wearing a jock strap and have constant pain.

Week 10 to 11 - Decided that, as I am nearing the three month mark where the urologist might actually admit there’s something wrong, that I’d try some more active measures. I’ve been doing 800mg of ibuprofen 3-4 times a day (planning to do this for two weeks), and hot baths every night. Stopped working out. Abstained for 5 days, but that doesn’t really seem to do anything so may not continue that.

Week 12 to 14 - No real change after the two weeks of ibuprofen and baths for 3 weeks or so. I am back to lifting weights and riding a recumbent bike for cardio. Doesn’t seem to do much. Pain is still consistent tenderness/achiness that seems to get worse as the day goes on. Sex doesn’t seem to affect it, so I’ve been pretty consistent at keeping that up daily to keep things moving. Pushed back my urologist appointment to next week due to a scheduling conflict. After he tells me nothing is wrong, and prescribes antibiotic/anti-imflammatory meds, my plan is to wait until the six month mark on July 31st and schedule a consult with Dr. Marks in Tucson.

Week 14 to 17 - Had a pretty significant reduction in pain at about 3.5 months (week 16). Swelling stopped. Pain greatly reduced. It was subtle at first, but I just noticed that I was walking and acting more normally, and not restricting my activities as much. I have what I would describe now as discomfort, and not really pain. It’s a relief to finally see some improvement. From what I can tell, nothing really caused this improvement other than time (didn’t coincide with any medications or changes in lifestyle). I’d say I’m about 85% of normal. Staying hopeful.

Week 18 to 19 - New symptoms! Yay! The stabbing, needle like pain that radiates in a line from my groin to my knee has been intermittent for months, but now it’s every day. And now I’m experiencing pin prick feelings all over my body, usually just one at a time. I get them in my calf, ankle, thigh, and arms. Nerve issues I guess.

Summary - I’m still hopeful that I’m just a slow healer, or I exacerbated the injury by lifting and being too active early. The pain is not debilitating, and I can still work, but the thought of having it forever is really depressing and I don’t think I can do it. Mostly I just feel stupid.

Thanks for reading.


#2

Couple of additional things that I’ve noticed:

Ice feels great at the time it’s on there, but within about 30 minutes of icing I get a really overwhelming ache/pressure feeling in the testicles. Won’t be doing that anymore.

Heat is definitely more pleasant, but I haven’t noticed any improvement in pain from the baths.

I feel like the epicenter of my pain is on the sides, between the testicle and the groin, nearer to the testicle. Seems like it might be centered around the vas site.


#3

Hi Tempe

You seem to be in the same position as me.

When you saw the urologist did he give you timescales of when the other “victims” healed?

Have you noticed any change, albeit however slight since the granuloma stared giving you problems.

I have been keeping a pain diary, and scoring my pain from 1 to 10 on each day and through this I have seen that I have started to improve.

I know how frustrating it is as you think that nothing is happening in the healing process, but I have seen little jumps , with the crushed nut feeling going and over the last 5 days , I no longer have any pain in balls or scrotum, it is now all in the groin/hip but the has slightly decreased over the weekend as well.

I was a three time a week gym goer, but have only been once since the vas (and this was before I started getting pain), so I don’t know if my lack of exercise has helped with the healing.

It is truly annoying that we don’t get told of these complications when they sit us down for the consultation.

Keep positive mate, I am sure you will be fine


#4

You sound like me as well. I started to feel a lot better after the 2nd week of regular ibuprofen. Mine was Jan 6 of this year, and based on my journal, late March is when the pulling ache finally started to abate. That is also when I stopped making daily pain journal entries.

I’m much better now - I am solely using briefs for support though. I also get some occasional aches but they are not nearly as bad and are tolerable, more discomfort than pain.


#5

Thanks guys. Encouraging to hear.

Woody, yep I was told that of the “6 in 1,000 that get chronic pain, some of them get better after 3 months, some after 6 months, and some never get better.”

It’s hard to say if there’s been improvement. I feel like there’s been change. I think the ball squeezing and nausea has lessened. It seems like the pain is more localized now at the vas sites, but that could just be because I now think that’s where it’s coming from. So hard to pin down, because I feel like the mental part heavily influences the sensations.

Robert, I was doing the ibuprofen thing too until today when I woke up feeling like I have a stomach bug. Didn’t seem smart to make it worse. It’s definitely not the “kicked ball nausea”, so that’s positive, but still feel like I could (want to?) vomit at any moment. Must have been something I ate.

I started my journal a week ago.


#6

Take it easy with the ibuprofen. It’s better to take with food, since it can cause stomach upset. Aleve (Naxopren) is similar to Ibuprofen but some people tolerate it better, and its effects last longer.

I occasionally still get the kicked in the ball nausea after exercising, but it’s way better now and manageable.

My urologist said 1% come back for pain (I’m sure many others suck it up), and long-term pain is very, very rare. I was told to come back in 2 months (which is a couple weeks from now) after my prior visit if my pain persisted. Thankfully, it’s at a better level now, and the minor symptoms I still have should go away.

That being said, if pain returns for me within the year, I would think long and hard about a reversal. I think we’re both in the normal healing window (just slower than normal)


#7

Yeah, my plan on the ibuprofen was a 14 day course. I tolerate it really well, but today’s nausea will probably end the course for me. Partly because I don’t think it’s really doing anything. I don’t feel like inflammation is really the issue. I just think it needs to heal.


#8

Hang in there. I also used support 24/7 that could have helped as well.


#9

Question: Is there any reason to go back to the urologist at this point (three months after vasectomy)?

I booked an appointment for the three month mark a while back, thinking I’d just cancel it if I was better by then, but now that’s two weeks out and it’s not looking likely.

From all the stories on here, it seems like the urologist will just do an ultrasound, say I have a granuloma or something, prescribe antibiotics/steroids, and then throw up his hands. Should my next appointment be with a pain or reversal specialist?


#10

I would go back to the urologist. He will look for any abnormal findings.
The likely outcome is the triumvetate of support, ibuprofen, and time to
rest. Hot baths dont hurt either.

I would give your body more time to heal after talking to the urologist.

I feel for you. Keep optimistic and remember you’re still healing. I’m
happy to talk. I am not 100%yet but am much better than i was, enough that
i dont think about it as much, but i do get discomfort from time to time.


#11

Tempe I am here for you mate.

I’m just past 13 weeks and the pain has now vastly diminished but the nerve twinges and tweaks are still playing on my mind.

See the uro, get your monies worth and ask a bucket full of questions.

Every relapse I get, I consider a redo, to put me back like I was. But I am going to leave it until a year if I am not 100%.

Keep positive, keep doing the pain diary.

It’s all shit I know, but you will be fine mate.

Feel free to pm me any time your down


#12

How do you like getting a real education? I have had 10 years to figure out why men go through this horrible pain and betrayal… You already know you did something ignorant, I can say time should help but even 10 years and $10,000 reversal has not fixed my problem with PVPS, I just learned how to live with it after I was able to work and walk again. The problem is very simple, we need to understand that there is a criminal facet to western medical practice and money comes before truth. If our medical system can get your money the means justifies the ends. Lying and covering the lies is the first order of business when you choose elective medical treatment. Now they will get as much money as they can from the damage they did to you. The laws have been written so you have no way to win a court battle so forget that. I wish the best for you and have a very long story to tell from my own experience but few or none are interested so this crap continues. I do talk anytime I have an opportunity and since I can feel my stupidity 24/7 I never forget about this mistake.


#14

Updated my timeline of symptoms above. No real changes in the last couple weeks (or months really). Just achy/fragile balls and kind of hot swollen feeling that increases throughout the day. Ball-kick nausea sprinkled in here and there with some muscle pain in the thighs.

Question: I have an appointment with the vas urologist on Thursday next week. This will be the first appointment since I crossed the 3 month barrier. What questions should I ask? I feel like between this forum and all the studies/papers I’ve read, I probably know more about PVPS than him, but is there something it would be good to get from him directly?

At the last appointment (5 weeks post vas) he said I had a granuloma (that I actually think is just the vas knot), and I’d be better within the week.


#15

What’s your pain like on a scale from 1 to 10? At the 3 month mark he may just tell you to wait it out. The thigh pain could be nerves. I’ve taken gabapentin and meloxphin which have helped a lot. But the gabba has change some the sensation I have during sex. The nerves get more sensitive as sex goes on. I could more pleasure if I go fast.
Just be aware of that if he suggested it. MJ edibles have help me a ton with pain and inflammation. I’ve almost have felt normal a few times recently since trying them.

See what he can give you for pain. It’s a difficult pain to dull unless he prescribes you the hard stuff which he probably won’t.


#16

The pain scale thing is so hard with this type of sensation. It’s not like anything else. Anywhere else in my body, and it’s probably a 1, but the location and the way it grabs your attention and seems to control all the muscles in the middle of your body make it more like a 3-5.

I think I’ll avoid pain medication as long as I can. I’m certainly functional right now. I would pay good money for something that could just stop me from thinking about it for a day though.


#17

Posted update above. Short version is that around week 16-17 there was a pretty significant improvement for me. My bad days are now pretty minimal, and my good days are zero scrotal pain at all. I still have some inner thigh pain that’s intermittent, and I can tell my hip and groin flexibility and strength are all messed up. I’m slowly increasing my weightlifting loads and have squatted in the 300’s with no pain. So, good news here. I’m staying positive that I’ll get to 100% eventually.


#18

I am now at 8 weeks from the botched surgery and 6 weeks from the 2nd, correcting surgery. I am a healthy, vegan, runner and tried to ignore the surgery and go on with my life. After all, real men don’t feel pain… pain is just weakness leaving the body… blah blah blah. At 51 I now have a real sense of my own mortality. This decision has knocked me on my ass… after four weeks with intense 10+ pain in my left testicle, with no relief in sight, I was ready to end it all. My highly credentialed Urologist kept telling me recovery was but a week away… he offered Oxy, antidepressants, high blood pressure meds (my bp was 145/125 owing to the pain) and Cipro (before switching me to Bactrim). A coworker suggested (forced) me to go see a general surgeon who was Cannabis friendly. The Dr knew exactly what I was talking about (PVPS), which is a change from the urologist saying this never happens, it is no big deal… in any case, Dr. Phelan told me the main blood supply to my left testicle had been cut and it would take one year to heal. He told me to stay positive and visualize the blood vessel growth and understand that it is a painful process. Instead of opiates, he recommended CBD oil (I have never smoked pot and I do not like to feel intoxicated) and rest (no running or working out, maybe for a year) along with a healthy diet (raw vegan). His philosophy is that the human body is an amazing machine, that sometimes we take for granted. Cutting healthy tissue out of a body is a bad idea and should be outlawed in most cases. However, in my case, I already did the damage so now it is my job to take the best possible care of my body and allow it to heal. If you live in a progressive state, I suggest you give Cannabis a try. My pain went from a 10 to a i-2… as soon as I started doing the CBD drops. I am angry that the government lied about Vasectomies… and surprise surprise, they also lied about Cannabis. Stay strong brothers… spread the word that men do feel pain, and this macho bullshit of “no pain no gain” is detrimental to all males on the planet.


#19

Interesting, kimo. I am in a medical marijuana state (AZ).

I haven’t seen any doctors outside of the urologist at this point, and my pain was never more than a 3-5 on the scale. But if it gets worse, I’ll definitely explore that. I have no interest in taking a bunch of opiates. I try to avoid medications in general.


#20

It may be a good idea to see another dr. Dr. Phelan is an old-timer who
has seen it all… he is also a board certified surgeon in CA, who
graduated from UC Med school. He explained that the surgery is in a highly
sensitive and important area, yet it is performed like a haircut. Surgeons
brag to one another about their speed in performing the operation, and
there are many things that can go wrong. When men complain, the Drs fall
back to their paradigm of "the evidence’ that this is an effective surgery
that improves lives while having very rare side-effects. It is so nice to
speak to an authoritative figure who know exactly what I am talking
about… and has seen it before and knows the outcome.


#21

Has anyone else’s pain not been sensitive to the touch?

Like, my balls feel super sensitive and “full”, but nothing down there hurts to the touch. Hurts whether I touch anything or not. Sex has no effect, exercise has no effect. Just seems like it hurts on the inside.