Post Vasectomy Pain Forum

Reversal with Dr. Robert Oates in Boston SAVED MY LIFE

Where do I begin… First let me say that for every 1 guy that writes on this site … I bet there is 1000 people reading that are too scared or unwilling to take the time to post. Just know that your not alone in your journey.

Back on April 7th, 2017 I had a vasectomy. Like most on here, and as a 41 year old father of two, I felt that it was the right time to get my wife off drugs and come up with a more permanent solution for birth control. After speaking with many friends and family members whom have had the process successfully and MUCH urging from my wife I decided to take the plunge… Wrong decision !

Here is what I felt after Vasectomy with timeline:
1.) Operation itself was easy, 15 min in and out with Dr. Hausladen in Dartmouth Ma. was a very nice , calm surgeon so I was feeling happy about my decision and sent friends photos of bouncing balls ect ect. I had a single incision and was burned as well as metal clamped on each side. (they no longer tie off in my area) … complete overkill if you ask me , but that was my only option.
2.) Was told by Dr. Hausladen I would be laid up for 3-5 days with minor discomfort. (which from what I felt at that time seemed like I was on tract). I iced regularly, took only one day of Oxycodone and then switched to Advil to bring swelling down /pain relief. On day 3 I noticed the left side “chord” swelled up like a little stick inside of my balls (only way I can explain it). It was painful to the touch , but doctor said not to worry.
3.) Week 2 - Wasn’t getting any better and felt like either side of my scrotum was clamped off with close line clips! I also felt a weird sensation as if the left side of my penis tip was numb/burning before and after urination… almost like i was peeing out of one side only… it was a very WEIRD / PAINFULL sensation… I continued to ice down regularly and now was put on Cipro (Antibiotic) . I was told by Dr. Hausladen that I most likely have an infection. I will tell you that by this time I was already feeling like I got sold a bill of goods and had been lied to. None the less I followed doctors orders and stayed on Advil and the Cipro.
4.) Week 3 - Most important for me at this point ? Will my penis still work the same ??? No one says that on this site here… but for me it was VERY important. I spent most of that week attempting to masterbate / get my body back to old self… but to no avail. For a guy whom enjoyed masterbating or having sex with wife every few days… Orgasims were less than eventfull and felt akward / not satisfying… Its like you get NO real release. Testicles started to become what I would refer to as a “UNI -BALL”. They no longer hung down individually, looked and felt like I had one solid ball. Still had urination issues and tons of burning at the chord. Doctors will try and tell you that its all in your head… I will tell you with complete certainty it is NOT… You have changed your body and this IS a problem…
5.) End of Month 1 - Panic setting in… By this time I was on a multitude of different drugs prescribed by the Doctor that did my vasectomy. I had done 3 straight weeks of Cipro (antibiotic), was taking tons of advil for swelling and pain and now was put on FLOWMAX (Tamsulosin) for the burning and urinary problems. Nothing worked…
6.) Month 2- Spent most of this month with regret and crying about my decision. I would find myself pacing the hallways at night after the kids and wife went to bed. I had trouble concentrating at work and found myself feeling very SAD inside. The only way I can describe the feeling is that I felt like I was dying from the inside out. As crazy as that sounds that’s the best way to describe it. As a private pilot I loved to fly (helicopters), now I found myself pulling off into the parking lot near the airport and cry… no flying, no urge to do anything.
7.) Month 3- Drugs Drugs and more drugs… that was my doctors answer to my problem. he now added MENTAL drugs to the picture which were suppose to calm my nerves and allow my body to adjust to the operation. BULLSH @T! He started me with Gabapentin and then Amitriptyline. I will tell you that by this point I had had enough and was already searching for a WAY OUT!
8.) Months 4-7 - This was a very tough time in my life. I started noticing that my penis was actually getting THINNER! doctors can say what they want but I KNOW MY BODY. Are they trying to tell me that after 41 years (28 of them spent masterbating or having sex) that I don’t know what my penis looks and feels like ? At this point I still didnt have a normal orgasim… My penis felt smaller/ thinner (i’m assuming it has something to do with the blood supply for the spermatic chord itself, and the orgasim hasd about 20% of its old fluid and smelt different as well (wife noticed that one)… I spent these months doing the best I could to have “life as usual”. I attempted to do some house projects, spend time with kids, had sex regularly with wife… ect ect. but didn’t feel right. Again that “dying on the inside” feeling constantly.
9.) Month 8 - REVERSAL… After much research I decide to take money out of my 401k and go see a microsurgeon. Dr. Robert Oates. http://www.robertoatesmd.com/about.html. BEST $8,000 I ever spent… If your looking for a sympathetic doctor to hold your hand and cry with you… this is NOT the guy. That being said … If your looking for the BEST fellowship trained doctor on the East Coast… this IS your guy. He was very informative and HONEST explaining to me that its a 50/50 shot for pain and actually suggested “nerve blocks” and other avenues first… But there was NO swaying my personal decision… I needed to do the only thing in my heart that felt right, get my body as close to normal as possible (win or loose).
10.) Reversal Day - I remember Dr. Oates saying to me as his staff was taking my blood pressure… “I’ve never seen a patient so calm”… I laughed and replied “I’ve been in pain for 8 months Doc, I can only get better or stay the same”. At that point A young medical student (its a training hospital) came up to me to sign a specific waiver that stated there is NO PROOF a reversal will heal my pain. I took a deep breath, signed and immediately felt better! Off to the surgery room they took me. Last thing I remember I was in a large room with 1-15 med students standing up high in a glass sort of classroom… It felt like I was in an episode of “Grey’s Anatomy”. I said “doc I dont think your drugs are working you may need something stronger to knock me out…” he laughed as I looked at the clock 9:10am… Then my eyes opened, I was in a different room 2:30pm and my crotch was packed with Ice! LMAO
11.) First 5 minutes… Already relief… can you believe it. I can barely move and I already knew I had made the right decision… I wanted to cry. No more CLIP feeling on either side of my tesitcles. I sat in the room and they gave me some juice / food and had me sign the forms for my release…
12.) Ride home - Tough Tough Tough… My father whom brought me to the hospital drove the 2 hours through rush hour stop and go traffic. Had to help me in and out of the car. Ride seemed like it took forever and I just wanted a bed and sleep.
13.) Week 1 POST REVERSAL - I went on a steady diet of eggs and fruit in the morning along with 4000 MG of VIt C and D (read somewhere it helps with the scaring). Stayed in bed, was sin good spirits and rested a lot.
14.) All of month 1 POST REVERSAL - Lots of ups and down. One day you fell great next day , not so much… I will say however what little pain I was feeling was DIFFERENT and manageable, unlike before. the stitches were basically 1 inch long on either side… I remember laughing with y wife one night that I now had “Frankenballs”… It look gruesome and bleed A LOT! Also it felt like some of the stitches were actually ATTACHED to my ball. making me feel like something was wrong… I will tell you now IT NOT… its just your body healing. Also it felt like my balls had a “face life” they were sitting a bit higher than normal… I will tell you that this also passes with time. (at least for me).
15.) Past 9 months… Every day month is better than the last. I still have an occasional day or two with what I would describe as Awkward sensations / burning… but it is 5%-10% of the pain I use to feel and completely manageable. I have MANY days now where I don’t even think about it. Sex feels great… Orgasims are back to normal and my penis size is also back to normal.

I’m VERY GLAD I didn’t wait to make this decision… I feel that because I listened to my body and my heart and NOBODY ELSE I was able to get put back together and heal before severe irreversible damage could occur. My 2 cents…

I wish anyone on here going through similar issues luck… and for as long as the universe allows me to feel healthy and well I will appreciate each day!

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Thanks for sharing your story, and who did your reversal with us @GM18501. Vas is the most disturbing thing that ever happened to me to. I can relate to so much of your story.

I had all the same thoughts as you, and I listened to my body to. I don’t have a story quite like yours, but I certainly don’t regret having a reversal/s either.

I’m curious to know what your SA numbers are looking like. If you know them, please share them with us.

Ringo,

Sorry to hear you did not have the same success story… I’m sure from the multitude of stories on here everyone’s body heals differently… how far along are you in your recovery?

Oddly enough my reversal has failed for motile sperm and fertility , however I have had much relief . I had one SA after 3 months and never went back after that. I figured as long as I was progressing , there was no reason to worry… again my concern was the pain and not the fertility. I still take it careful with the wife … but as far as I know I have no swimmers. I’ll report back if I ever have another test done, I’ve been thinking about doing another just to know, but they are not cheap … my last one cost $350.

I’ll take 10 more children over how I use to feel so whatever life gives me from this pint on I’m ok with.

Thanks for the post. I had my vas in March 2017. Pain since day 2. I’m thinking of reversal this fall but terrified things could get worse. Good to read positive stories. Also couldn’t care less of return of sperm. My wife says she’ll get another IUD. Might just let her do it and not worry about it.

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My first reversal failed by month 6, and a year later I had another. I had my second reversal in July 2011, and it failed in the fall of 2013, so I’m out there a ways.

There’s even more to my story, including a pre-existing varicocele pain condition, and a third corrective surgery in Dec 2011, but I will spare you the details. In short, it’s taken me a bit longer to get there, and I realize I may never completely get there.

My outcome isn’t all that bad far as where I’m currently at, or where I’ve been since I started posting in this forum several years ago for that matter.

I get some flare ups on occasion, generally after I ejaculate, but other than that, my problem’s are minor considering what many here are experiencing day in and day out, or what I’ve experienced in the past.

Your recovery sounds pretty typical. Unless things go buck wild on you, don’t let the fact that your reversal failed go to your head, and keep on keeping on.

I’m not a whole lot different than you describe far as the positives go. I don’t feel disconnected anymore. My balls hang fairly normal again. I do feel whole again. I ejaculate regularly again. Things aren’t perfect, but they are a whole lot better.

No point in getting another SA just for me. At this point I will consider your reversal a failure far as return of sperm, but a success with pain, amongst other positive things.

Don’t be a stranger, and give us an update someday.

I was very nervous. But something told me getting put back together was the right thing to do. I will tell you though that I went into it (and still go through my healing) with tons of optimism. I feel that that also helped me through the ups and downs…

Another issue I forgot to mention. After my vasectomy when I would cough I would feel my pelvic floor jiggle or make a sharp pain… After the reversal that also subsided…

As you can see I had a lot of issues from my vasectomy… so the relief im having by the reversal was a welcomed change…

Yeah, I lack the optimism that you have, but I feel that if I’m going to go through with anything, being put back together is the best option at normalcy.

I totally get the feeling of things just being off in the pelvic floor. For example, sometimes when I need to poop, I swear I feel increased pain and pressure in my scrotum. Its like everything tightens up until I go. It’s not a bad feeling, it’s just not a pleasent feeling.

That sounds about right… I had all kinds of pelvic floor / testicle issues before my reversal… some i’m even sure I’ve forgotten… thankfully.

To this day I truly feel I was not given ENOUGH information about the pros and cons… and only stumbled onto this great site after I did the vasectomy and I wasn’t getting better. Not once was I told I could have permanent pain.

Its a shame really.

@GM18501, do you happen to know if you had a full clean up during your reversal? In other words, did you have all the scarring, sperm granuloma, possible hemoclips, foreign objects, etc removed before he put you back together?

I study this stuff, and like others to be aware as well.

Thanks

Yes I am fully aware of what occured during surgery and was surprised to read the full 3 page write up post op when I requested it on my first visit back with Dr. Robert Oates. Most of the writing was “above my pay grade” … however I did read that all visible scarring was removed along with clips and burnt ends. Furthermore all four ends were dissected into two layers and individually sewn back together. I did not see any mention of Sperm granuloma or foreign objects in the writeup.

After surgery the Dr. did tell me that the way my original vasectomy cut me was “good” (for whatever that means… and that he left enough of the chord for him to work with. They also tested for viable sperm while doing the surgery and both sides had “few sperm” as I read.

Sounds like you had a full clean up to me. Hemoclips would be considered foreign objects within the vas/s as well.

Foreign objects, foreign stuff in the scrotom as a result of a vasectomy, it’s all very similar.

I’m going to guess that when he said the way you were cut was “good” means your weren’t butchered in a way that he felt was overkill, unnecessary, or made the reversal more difficult at minimum.

I appreciate your input.

Thanks

Hi, thanks for sharing. I also had a reversal about 9 months ago, and still feeling slow improvement over time, though I am still icing 2X a day and taking maloxicam NSAID. Yesterday I forgot to take my pill and to my surprise had only minor discomfort for most of the work day, even while sitting for most of it. That is the first time in almost 2 years I could sit for most of the day without some serious pain, so I can say for sure I am better than before the reversal. I gave myself 1 year post-vasectomy before I went for the reversal and felt that my situation was not improving with time.

So, just wanted to add to your post that reversal is also working for me, but the healing is taking time. So, for anyone going through this know that healing can continue for quite a long time after the reversal. I am hoping I will be pain free at my 1 year reversal anniversary in Nov. Lately I have found when I can get some good exercise in during the day, my symptoms are not as bad.

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Kevin,

I’ll be honest, I believe stopping ice (although painful for first two weeks) was the best thing I ever did. I personally believe it allowed the blood to flow to that area and heal everything. I strongly recommend getting out of the icing routine if possible.

Wishing you much luck in your healing!

Hi Kevin - checking in some months later (new to the forum) - how are you feeling now, one and a half years after reversal? Are you pain free yet? I am three months in post reversal and anxious to hear success stories! Cheers

Hi - I think I am a success story, my discomfort/ pain is much less and more manageable now than pre-reversal. Unfortunately I am not pain free, and I still have some level of discomfort every day. Overall though, I don’t think about it a lot and the pain is at a level that doesn’t distract me at work or keep me from exercising or other activities like it did pre-reversal. I still have to wear a jock strap all the time though, which I wish were not the case, but I’m just thankful that I can run and ride a bike again.

I’m glad I got the reversal. It helped, but didn’t completely fix the problem. It may be still slowly getting better, but it’s hard to say.

I had slow improvement after reversal that took a long time…hang in there, at 3 months you still have a lot of healing to do internally.

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