I have put off creating this for too long. I have visited this site off and on over the past year, and sometimes it has helped and other times it seemed like it was the biggest source of my anxiety.
I want to first say I am sorry for everyone that finds themselves in the position they need to even search for a site like this hoping to find answers to such an isolating situation, and then thanks to everyone who posts their story along with the medical decisions they make and the updates that follow. The information can be really helpful.
So, how I got here. I was 32 years old, My oldest son had just turned 5 and my youngest daughter was about to turn 1. My wife had what I would consider a difficult delivery with our daughter and we had decided we were happy with a boy and a girl.
I did what many responsible adults do when considering contraceptive methods and went to a consult for a vasectomy November 2017. I was given the pamphlet and the Dr. discussed complications such as Hematomas, sperm granuloma, and infections. I asked about type of underwear to wear, and he said whatever is comfortable, but most people opt for some type of brief. I asked about pain afterwards and he said to expect to be sore for a couple of days, but had never had anyone have any extended pain past a few days. I questioned him again about it, and he said he had never had any of his patients have any problems and he had actually “fixed” 2 guys that had some minor issues.
I walked away from that consultation and did not call back to schedule the procedure. I had one of the best years of my life. Work was going well for me, my wife had just finished her PhD, and we were finally spending more quality time together after we put the kids to bed, which lead to more intimacy. I am glad I had this year.
November 2018, I start thinking about contraceptive measures again. I didn’t want my wife on birth control for the next 15+ years because she had been on it for so long already, and it did effect her. In this past year, I had several friends go through with a vasectomy and they all seemed to be very happy with the results. I schedule another consult and get the same pamphlet from the same Dr. I saw a year ago with the same story.
I call back and schedule the procedure for December 21, 2018. This was the day everything went to hell for me. I could not have possibly imagined what I would be in store for. Hindsight is 2020.
The Vasectomy: Was a no scalpel procedure, shots hurt like hell, took him about 10-15 minutes to do the damage. Cut and clipped no cauterization or sutures that I was aware of. When he was finished, he said I could go ahead and get up and get dressed or keep laying for a few minutes if I felt faint. I went ahead and got up and noticed my sack felt like I was carrying a bowling ball. I even commented " I feel like I am carrying a bowling ball down here, is that normal?" He said, It may feel heavy from the anesthetics. I asked “Did everything look and go Ok” he said “Oh yea”. Then he was out of the room. I put my standard boxer briefs on (No strap) and met my wife in the lobby and she drove me home.
Within hours of being home, I developed a reactive hydrocele (did not know this at the time). I was in excruciating pain as the swelling got as large as a grapefruit. I had no clue what was normal or not, but I told my wife something couldn’t possibly be right. I texted a few friends that had the procedure and they said the same thing. December 24, 2018 we go back to see the on call urologist. He said it could be a hematoma, and give it more time. December 28, 2018 I had made zero improvement and gotten worse so we went to a walk in clinic that friday night and they ordered an ultrasound the next day at the hospital. Went to the hospital the next day and had the ultrasound done. I still remember the walk up the steps to get to the room, absolutely miserable. Ultrasound showed a hydrocele. Lucky me.
First week of January 2019, I see the surgeon that did the procedure. He seemed very empathetic about what had happened and assured me he was going to get me right. He said he had never seen anything like this happen to anyone ever before. I told him that even though the right side was swollen due to the hydrocele and was painful and uncomfortable, I had what seemed like more pain on my left side just above the testicle where a small bump was at. I asked him what that was and what could be causing that pain, he shrugged and said he wasn’t sure. I asked if it could be the clips or the vas that was cut, and he said again he just wasn’t sure. I asked what do we do now. He said to give the hydrocele some time as it may reabsorb. Wonderful.
I ordered several different types of jock straps until I found one that could fit everything in. The only problem was my left side hurt like hell just above the testicle and I thought maybe the strap was digging into too much or the hydrocele was putting pressure on it. I didn’t know what was going on, just that it hurt.
February 2019: After 5 weeks something had to give, so I scheduled an appointment and had the damn thing aspirated. That was a world of fun. Got to get those awesome numbing shots that hurt like hell again and having a 30 CC syringe jammed into your scrotum repeatedly and drawing fluid out. At least at the end of this procedure I had a bit of slack in my scrotum. Everything was still large, but this provided some relief.
March 2019: I went another 4 weeks and had a follow up with the surgeon. He seemed very happy that the fluid had not returned fully (even though I was still carrying around a tennis ball). He said to give it some more time and hopefully the rest would reabsorb. Scheduled a follow up Early September 2018. Great.
From March to August I patiently wait, hoping things would go back to normal. I try to live a normal life and for the most part I succeed. I was always uncomfortable, but I tried to not let the situation affect me. The back/top of my balls seemed to constantly be sore, and my left scrotum just above my testicle and outer thigh tingled/burned all the time along with my inner thigh and my perineum area hurt when sitting.
I get a call back from the urologist in August saying they had to push my appointment out a few weeks. Fine.
Sometime in September everything goes to hell. Not sure what caused it. I end up “tweaking” my lower left back or it had a spasm and it hurt like hell. A week or so later the burning in my left scrotum got so bad I couldn’t sleep for more than a few hours at night. I called the urologist and say I need to be seen sooner. They tell me my Urologist was out on extended leave for medical reasons. Wonderful. So, I had to reschedule with a different Urologist and the earliest I could be seen is Ocotober 7, 2018.
I see urologist #2 and give him the backstory. He orders an ultrasound to see if anything had changed in the area. Ultrasound comes back showing a Hydrocele on the right side and a 3mm epididymal cyst on the left side. I asked what could be causing the pain on the left side. He said he wasn’t sure. He recommends a Hydrocelectomy to fix the right side. After discussing this with my wife, I schedule the surgery hoping maybe relieving the pressure of the hydrocele it would resolve the pain on the left (if it was agitating a nerve or due to the size, as I thought the hydrocele had been increasing in size over the past few weeks)
Ocotober 24, 2018: The Hydrocelectomy, Ouch. They knock me out, cut an incision in the middle of my scrotum, pull the right testicle out, drain the fluid, and in my case radically excised my tunica vaginalis. Stitch me up and leave a drain tube. I wake up with a feeling like my testicles had been kicked 1,000 times. I go home within an hour of waking up, at least they put me in a strap. I am pretty miserable for 4 days with the drain tube causing the worst of the discomfort. After those 4 days, I go back and the surgeon removes the tube. That was a relief.
It seemed like everything was going to be ok the first week after surgery, but then the dreaded burning pain in my left side came back and spread again with vengeance. I had always felt pressure in my lower abdomen/inguinal canal since the vasectomy, but I thought maybe it was from the weight of the hydrocele. Now it turned into some sharp, burning pain. It was at this point I started to fear the worst. My mental state, which had been pretty good the past year started to deteriorate rapidly. I won’t go into any details, but suffice it to say it was bad. None of my previous issues seemed resolved and I now had new pain.
I called the urologist office and saw the surgeon 2 weeks after the procedure. He reassured me what I was feeling was normal and would resolve.
I am now almost 10 weeks post op and still have some issues.
I have burning pain in my inner thighs, outer thighs, scrotum, and perineum areas when sitting for longer than 15 minutes. Makes driving very uncomfortable. I can get a sharp pain in my left inguinal? right at the bast of the penis just to the left side. When I put pressure the sharp pain intensifies. Getting up from sitting the back of my balls hurt like hell, almost like someone is trying to rip them off, but once I start moving the pain eases up. Same thing happens when I go from moving to sitting, it hurts like hell, but then eases up. The back/top of my balls ache constantly. Just above the left testicle hurts and gets worse whenever the testicle is forced upward with a jock strap or briefs or sitting, it feels like something is just putting constant pressure on it, I have to wear loose boxers to keep this pain from intensifying to an unbearable level. The incision still hurts to the touch, but hopefully that will improve. Also, my lower left back and hip will burn at 2 locations.
I have had my testosterone tested twice. I have an appointment on the 2nd to review the second results. I will update that information in a few days.
I know this seems like a lot of information, and thanks to anyone who happens to read through all this and I will gladly take any advice or suggestions anyone can offer.
I will keep any updates on my situation in this post. If anyone has any questions about hydroceles or the hydrocelectomy procedure, please don’t hesitate to ask.
I would like to give a special thanks to my wife, she has been such a rock for me at times. She really is one of the most amazing people on this planet. I don’t know how people go through anything like this alone.
Thanks again and Here’s to hoping 2020 is a better year than 2019.