Post Vasectomy Pain Forum

Hoping for Pain Resolution

Had vasectomy in 2007, reversal in 2016 failed (pulled apart), redo in 2017 returned sperm to ejaculate. My left testicle has never been 100% since this surgery. Since that time, sperm have disappeared twice for months at a time, in both cases, after long courses of antibiotics, they came back. After the second disappearance of sperm, I saw several doctors, one who suggested a third vas reversal. Around this time (Feb 2019) I started getting burning pain near the re-connection site. Early on, I also had shooting pain into the abdomen. I occasionally have a good day, but am hopeful someone has a suggestion on getting more relief or (fingers crossed) complete pain relief.

So far, I’ve had

  1. a nerve block/steroid, which worked some, but I can’t do anymore as the doctor said the steroids will throw off my testosterone, and we’re trying to get pregnant.
  2. Taken NSAIDS (aspirin seems to work the best, but I’ve taken them until I basically hemorrhage uncontrollably if I get cut, scraped, bruised)
  3. Taken Tumeric/Curcumin (as a replacement for aspirin) not sure it’s helping really
  4. Acupuncture, weekly for a couple of months. I feel like it’s helping, but, then again, I’m on this forum after a couple of months and $1k+ of treatments.
  5. I cut out almost all processed foods, only eat warm foods and room temp or warmer green tea or heavily purified (6-stage filter) water
  6. Try to walk regularly

These are all things I’ve read will help. On a bad day now, I’m about 50% of the pain I was in in March, 2019, and I’ve even had a couple of days since doing acupuncture where I was almost completely pain free, but it was usually back within a day or 2. Having those few days have actually given me hope that I can be pain free, that’s why the acupuncture guy keeps getting my $.

That being said, that’s my experience, anyone have other suggestions of things that have helped? I’m also open to answering any questions anyone has about my 3 years of left testicle pain.

When you say sperm returned to your ejaculate after your redo reversal, what kind of numbers are we talking about? Can you be more specific?

You say that sperm completely disappeared from your ejaculate more than once, and I assume you had at least one lab confirmed SA both times to be sure of this. What kind of numbers did you have when you say sperm came back after courses of antibiotics? Can you be more specific about those events?

Also, I assume you are sure it was antibiotics you were taking on a failed SA, and not courses of NSAID’s, or steroid’s such as prednisone or methylprednisolone. Sorry, had to ask.

Near-normal numbers about 4 months out from reversal. Most parameters were about 80% of the way to normal and motility was about 60% of the normal range.

2 Analysis with 0 sperm in ejaculate. I also confirmed this at home with a microscope. I recognized that there were either white blood cells or immature sperm, which saved my a $10k unnecessary surgery that I can only imagine would have complicated things further. When I told my Vas Reversal surgeon that I was seeing small round cells with no tails, he said it couldn’t hurt to do antibiotics. The first time I did 30 days of doxycycline and Levaquin. The second time I did 30 days of cypro, 55 doxycycline and 45 Levaquin. I’m thankful that I finally got my doctors to believe I had an infection, despite all my tests coming back with no bacteria found. Praise God, the sperm has not disappeared again since March 2019. I pray that’s a problem that’s resolved.

Otherwise, I’ve only had the one steroid injection, I’ve not taken any other steroids as it can effect our fertility (per the doctors).

Oh, a quick note that I didn’t really find online. If you have lots of white blood cells in your ejaculate, they produce a bi-product that will kill the sperm. So, even if you have no infection but your body thinks you do, lots of small non-moving dots may be either white blood cells or dead/immature sperm which they are killing off. Last tip I got from fertility doctor, ask for a “qualitative” semen analysis, they will further test for white blood cells, etc. A standard semen analysis is “quantitative”, they’re just counting sperm, which may, like in my case, be 0.

Interesting. I wish you had better data from your SA’s. Normal, below normal, above average, etc - isn’t specific enough. I like to see the actual count, and motility numbers.

Above average, normal, below, etc is like saying - in most cases, usually, etc. Don’t forget, the medical system, including doctors, urologists, etc would tell you that a testosterone number of 275 is within normal range (yikes).

Perhaps you should do some research at the lab that actually conducted the testing, and get the actual numbers from all of your previous SA’s. I suspect it’s possible you may learn something new about your story if you did that.

I’m guessing you don’t have any anomalies, such as a sperm granuloma on one side right at the repair. A physical examination, or possibly an ultrasound may be the only ways I know of to be certain. You’d hope a urologist would be competent and capable of figuring that out manually, but no promises. IDK.

There’s people on here that talk, hypothesis, etc about super bugs getting trapped in your epididymal tubes, etc. But, man, if I’m understanding you correctly, you’ve taken a lot of antibiotics. IDK. Side note - Be careful with all that stuff. Lots of complications can arise from antibiotics too.

I suppose I do seriously wonder if you are even open on one side. I’ve seen way to many guys say things like - I’m sure I’m open on both sides. And I’m like, wtf? Without proper testing, hth do you know?

BTW, do you know what your testosterone number is?

Oh, let me be clear, I’m not saying at all that I’m sure I’m open on both sides, simply that I’m open somewhere because sperm are coming through. I have the analysis papers lying around somewhere, I’ll see if I can dig them up.

Same for testosterone, it’s a little low (don’t remember exactly), I’m on Clomid at the moment to boost that a bit.

Also, we were able to get pregnant, in Sept, but had a miscarriage, so we’re encouraged on the fertility side of things. Mostly we’re concerned about the burning/aching pain in the left testicle at present.

I gotcha.

Beins you are trying to get your wife or partner pregnant, testosterone replacement therapy probably isn’t the right option, nor is papaya seed powder. Reducing your sperm count sounds like the right idea, but not at the cost of no pregnancy. It’s possible neither would help, and it’s not worth the risk at the moment. On that note, if I understood you correctly, it sounds like at least some of what you already have been advised about was the truth.

Have you tried the NSAID’s - celebrex or meloxicam?

For all we know, you suffer from purely neuropathic pain, but based on what I’m reading here, and in another thread you posted in - I’m really not sure. A single inflamed repair could be indicative of anything, including a sperm granuloma. Sperm granuloma is a common risk with vasectomys and reversals. It’s certainly not rare.

A little more history needed.

Did you have the reversal for pain or fertility? I assume for fertility, but IDK. If so, any sperm granuloma problems prior to the reversal? What kind of vasectomy did you have? Open ended, or closed ended?

Reversal was for fertility. I had a long recovery from the original vasectomy, but not the long term and ongoing pain of PVPS. The first reversal was also a long recovery. We later found it was likely because I disconnected the tubes after surgery because I did not respond well to waking up from sedation and my wife was driving me at the time. My wife says I was irritable and kept aggressively pressing on the surgery area. The second surgery started off well, but after day 2, it was also a long recovery.

I have had an ultrasound and am hopeful the urologist (supposed to be the best in my area, but also the one that suggested a 3rd reversal because of scar tissue, even though I was telling him that small circles were present on the microscope) would know what to look for. This urologist also squeezed my connection site like he was trying to bust grapes. I almost went through the roof. My knees literally did buckle when he pressed down on them and rolled them.

I had a closed-ended vas (clamps).

Again, very blessed that fertility looks hopeful. Eager to read and open to any tips about continuing to reduce pain.

I hear you.

It’s interesting that you seemingly haven’t responded well to neither the vasectomy, nor your reversals.

I don’t think I have ever heard a testimonial where one says they tore their repairs apart post reversal. For me, it’s kinda hard to imagine that happening to you under the circumstances you mentioned. IDK. Whatever the case, I am well aware that it can happen tho.

You never did answer this question ^^^

You’ve only got so many options. I suppose there are many in the big picture, but I still consider them to be few. Medications, supplements, various types of blocks, more time (keep waiting), various types of physical therapy (PT), various kinds of mental strategies (meditation etc), more surgery, and so on.

There’s a lot of good information, conservative treatments, etc, on this site to be found, but you may have to look for it. Perhaps someone else will chime in with their thoughts.

BTW, you aren’t the first fertility guy to report a pain story post reversal on this site. You are one of several. Don’t forget about the search bar on this site. You may find it handy locating specific questions or information that’s been posted in the past.

Whatever may happen to you - please keep us posted. Good luck.

Great, thanks for letting me know.

As for NSAIDS, I have taken meloxicam. I actually had the worst pain while taking it, and responded better then 2 ibuprofen every 6 hours. Later I discovered that aspirin worked even better, but I was certainly bruising/bleeding easily, also my doctor told me at the rate I was taking them, it was likely I would get an ulcer.

Well, I hope to be an encouragement to others. I feel like I’ve probably had about 2.5 years total of pain/discomfort. Thankfully there have been some breaks in there, or periods where paid in 1 or 2, not 5+. I would recommend trying 4-6 acupuncture treatments, just to see if it helps. I’ve read some guys making some pretty desperate statements on here, and I can sympathize, but I’d certainly encourage them to try acupuncture, I was skeptical, but convinced enough that it’s helping that I’m dropping about $100/week to keep going.

I know God can do all things. Not sure why we have hard times sometimes, but I’m sure it makes us all stronger. It’s certainly helped me to appreciate some things I used to take for granted. In either case, my best to everyone and I will keep checking back for any additional ideas from the group.