Post Vasectomy Pain Forum

Chronic nausea and GI issues---anyone?

I am approaching the 7-month mark and it feels like my chronic nausea and GI symptoms (mostly loose stools) havent gotten any better. I talked with Dr. P at PUR and he thinks a reversal is the best course of action. I’m not thrilled at the idea, but I dont know how much longer I can live with this nausea. I feel mildly nauseous ALL the time, with moments of more severe nausea (mostly a feeling of disgust rising up from my testes, heavy in my lower abdomen, up into my throat). I am desperately hoping to find someone who had the same experiences—with chronic nausea as the primary symptom—so that I can have a sense of next steps. Of the 4 uro’s i’ve met, two of them think that nausea isnt a common symptom and may be unrelated (endoscopy pending) and two think it could be referred testes pain/discomfort (i.e., kicked in the nuts feeling). I’M REALLY HOPING TO FIND SOMEONE OUT THERE WHO HAS HAD SIMILAR SYMPTOMS. I’ve emailed a bunch of guys from this forum but nobody’s symptoms align that much with mine (see below). Honestly, I’d be fine doing any major intervention, including reversal, if I could be certain (or at least more certain) that it would help. I just dont know how much longer I can live with this nausea. Any advice is appreciated!!!

Details:
I underwent a vasectomy in January, 6.5 months ago, and the procedure went well. I do remember having some mild shooting pain during the procedure–he seemed surprised to see me jolt in reaction in the moment—and the urologist recently told me that I did seem a bit “sensitive” during the procedure, though he was not concerned at the time. I recovered fairly quickly. Within 2 weeks, I was feeling 95% better. I still had some mild pain/tenderness, but I felt good enough to get back on the bike. After 2 months, I still felt some mild pain/tenderness, so I called the urologist, and he recommended that I stop biking and that I take ibuprofen for a week. He put me on a fairly heavy dose of ibuprofen, and the second day I remember feeling very nauseous. This was the first time I specifically remember feeling nauseous, though it is possible that I may have had some mild nausea before that but just did not fully identify it. I called the urologist and he told me that nausea is not a part of the PVPS clinical picture. He encouraged me to keep taking the ibuprofen. I continued taking the ibuprofen for about a week. The ibuprofen did not do much of anything for the pain, and I started feeling nauseous from that point forward. I’m still not sure whether I was nauseous all the time back then because the nausea can be so mild at times.

I started doing some pelvic floor exercises around this time (March/April). At first, I did some stretches I found online. In mid April, I started working with a pelvic floor therapist. The pain was still fairly mild, and I felt like it was not just pain in the testes but some discomfort/achiness in the muscles around my groin, including my upper thighs and stomach. At other times, I had other GI symptoms, including stomach pain and loose stools. The pelvic floor therapist was fairly convinced that it was pelvic floor issues, and he did some stretching work, dry needling, myofascial work, etc. I met with him a few times over the following month or 2, and I religiously did pelvic floor stretching routine at home. I felt some improvement and, for a few days I felt almost no symptoms and I was convinced I was getting better. More generally, my testes started feeling a little bit better, but I still felt nauseous some of the time. The nausea was quite mild, at times—just a barely perceptible sense of disgust rising from my groin, into my lower abdomen, up through my chest, and into the back of my throat (i.e., salivation). The nausea and other GI symptoms persisted, even as stretching seemed to help my groin area feel better. The pelvic floor therapist suggested I see a GI specialist. The GI specialist prescribed Prilosec. Within a week, the stomach pain was gone and my stools were back to normal. The discomfort in my testes seem to dissipate, as well, and I had about 10 straight days…maybe even 2 weeks… in which I felt fairly normal. In fact, I felt so good that I emailed my urologist and my pelvic floor specialist to tell them that I was recovered. However, about 2 weeks after starting the Prilosec, the GI symptoms returned, including mild lower abdomen pain and loose stools, and I again began feeling nauseous. This was in mid May, and that I have felt nauseous since that time, pretty much nonstop.

4 weeks ago, I met with Dr. David Fenig. He physically examined me and determined that there was nothing remarkable about my testes. He suggested that the GI symptoms may be unrelated to the vasectomy, encouraging me to follow-up with a GI specialist. He also prescribed doxycycline and Celebrex, both of which I have been taking for the past 2 weeks. I have seen no improvement with these medications. Last week, I spoke with an MD friend of mine who often treats people with persistent GI issues. He suggested that, before I take any other GI steps (i.e., endoscopy), I first make dietary changes (cut out gluten) and potentially get stool testing to see if that helps the GI issues. I also spoke with another pelvic floor therapist, and she made similar suggestions.

Currently, my testes pain is fairly minimal. For the most part, my testes just feel more tender than usual. They hurt a bit with contact, but nothing too bad. Very rarely, I feel some mild sharp pain(2 or 3 on the scale), but it goes away very quickly. As I wrote in my email previously, my main distress is the nausea. It has been consistent over the past 2 months or so. I feel mildly nauseous pretty much all the time, often in the back of my throat but regularly also in my chest and lower abdomen. If I am active or busy, I can generally ignore/not notice it. But there are times when I am distracted by it, even when I am working. It seems to get worse if I remain seated for long periods of time—generally tracking with the testes pain that gets mildly increased with remaining seated. As I described above, it often feels like a nausea starting in my testes/groin/lower abdomen and rising through my chest into the back of my throat. When it is more mild, it feels more like a disgust/salivation sensation in the back of my throat. There are times when the nausea seems to make the rest of my body feel ‘on edge’ or just, to put it in clinical terms, “feeling like crap.” :slight_smile:

At this point, I really just want to understand what is going on with my body, whether the nausea is specifically related to the testes discomfort, what the best treatment approach would be, whether a more aggressive intervention (i.e., procedure) might be necessary, etc. My main question is whether I am going to feel nauseous for the rest of my life, which, at this point, is probably my biggest fear.

@MeerSwan

I developed severe systemic flu like symptoms post vas. Most of my symptoms are CNS symptoms (headaches, brain fog, dizziness, confusion) but I do have a lot of nausea. I dry heave weekly. I’m not sure if my problem is your problem but it ended up being an extreme case of Lyme disease that was triggered by the vasectomy. I was told by 126 doctors that I was fine. The 127th was able to figure it out and I’ve been in intense treatment ever since. Don’t give up.

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I often wake up with nausea sometimes leads to dry heaving until I am able to walk it off. Can get no help from doctors. A specialist said a warm bath every day is the best thing. Has been years. Diet helps some, ultra sound helps some. I would be interested in how your reversal goes if you choose that. I have not found a doctor I would trust to cut me again. Best of luck

Hi other Ethan,

Just wondering if you would be willing to share more details about your experience. For example when did you have your vasectomy and when did you start having problems as a result?

I had my surgery in 2013. I was nagged by my wife day and night until I gave in. I was a bad experience from the time the doctor started on the second but as the freezing came out sooner than expected. My nuts swelled to 3 times there size. I was off work for three weeks instead of the promised two days. And when I returned in needed to take breaks from my desk in a lazy boy chair. I had a canoe trip booked on he church hill river in northern Saskatchewan. I asked the doctor if it was ok to go. As the place her cut open had not fully healed. He said it would be fine as long as I used supporting under wear. On day 3 of 6 on a portage my sack split. I used an knuckle bandage and hockey tap to close it up. Ask well as Advil and whiskey to finish the trip. When I returned to civilization the doctors had the hole packed with gauze and salt water to be changed daily. It took about three weeks for the hole to close up. It was during that time the morning stomach issues started. When I have bad days of pain the next morning I have dry heaves and nausea. I have try a number of treatments with marginal success. Top two were a nerve reset by a natural path in Vancouver and ultra sound treatment to break down the scar tissue. I have 70% of my life back. And am not sure if I want to chance a reversal of accept this is as good as it gets. Best of luck on your journey.

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Thanks for the story. These doctors are just criminal the way they egg women on with rosy promises and give men false advice about what activities they can safely engage in during their recovery.

Did you have any of the sexual performance or sensitivity issues that some other guys here have had?

Damn dude that’s horrible. The vasectomy industry really undersells the acute recovery. I was told I could ride my bike again in a week. It’s been two years. I haven’t met in person another PVPS sufferer, but several who complained that the initial recovery was longer and more painful than they were told. It’s lying by omission to lure men in.

I thought i’d update for anyone interested, current or future, and to hear if anyone has thoughts. I’ve seen some improvement over the past few months. I underwent acupuncture aiming at testes pain/nausea, and I started taking nortriptyline at the same time. 20mg right before bed. One of the two (likely the drug) helped cut down on the testes pain, which has always been pretty mild, and the nausea is less intense than it was. I have several consecutive hours, at times, when it’s barely perceptible. And it’s never as bad as it was in August before I got the endoscopy (results were negative/inconclusive).

I’ve also done more pelvic floor therapy, including the wand, which has been helpful. I definitely feel looser in the region, including the thighs, groin, lower ab. And the wand doesnt seem to induce the same nausea/pain as it did a few weeks ago—maybe a sign that i’ve loosened up in there.
I’m also exercising more—100 push-ups per day, much more cardio, getting back in shape.

I met with another urologist, Dr. Robert Dean, and he agrees with Dr. P that the nausea is likely related to congestion (i.e., inflamed epididymis impacting the nerve, causing a vasovagal/nausea reaction). So I’m back to assuming that a reversal is likely in my future. I’m now at 9 months post-vas, so i’ll probably give it another 3 - 6 months before moving forward. Anyone have thoughts? I still have yet to find another PVPS sufferer with a similar profile to mine.
Thanks, all. Stay strong!