It’s the dreaded “V” word that no one wants to talk about: vasectomies. As a matter of fact, very few men would even dare admit to getting one with their fellow friends. That’s because it's one of the most intimate surgeries anyone can get. And it’s also a surgery that might shape your future. That’s why communication is so important before you and your partner decide on getting a vasectomy. It’s the one kind of birth control that will control your fate, your future and your family.
With that being said, a vasectomy isn’t for everyone. As a matter of fact, many men have their doubts up until the very last moment. And that’s absolutely normal as they don’t know if they might feel the same way about their surgery one, five or even ten years down the road. They want to make sure they are making the right decision before getting that first snip.
That’s why we’ve come up with 15 things to consider before you decide on a vasectomy. And remember, this decision usually consists of two different people. You want to make sure that both you and your partner are on the same page. Here’s what you need to know.
15 You Might Break Up Or Divorce
It’s without a doubt that when you decide on getting a vasectomy, two people are involved in the decision. You want to make sure that your partner is on the same page. And while you might be on the same wavelength right now, let’s face it: anything can happen in the future. Today you might think that you are going to be married forever but tomorrow you might be totally ready to file for a divorce.
If you do happen to split up, your partner is stuck with his vasectomy. What happens if he breaks up with you and ends up finding love with another partner? And what if that partner wants children in the future? Sure, a reverse procedure is one option to consider, but it’s also a painful option.
14 There Will Be Side Effects
Just like everything else in life, there’s a good chance that you might suffer from some mild to serious side effects after your vasectomy. But don’t worry, it’s nothing to really fret about. By now everyone knows that side effects are completely normal, regardless of the scope of your surgery.
According to medical professionals, you might suffer from any of the following: bleeding or a blood clod, blood on your semen, bruising on your scrotum, mild pain or discomfort and even swelling. And remember, vasectomies don’t protect from sexually transmitted infections, either. At the same time though, vasectomies are still considered safe, although you still have to be careful. According to the New York Times, “ Because it can take several months for sperm remaining after a vasectomy to be washed out, men are counseled to use other contraception methods until tests show that their semen is free of active sperm.
13 You Might Change Your Mind
Let’s face it: no one is the same person they were ten years ago. And they certainly won’t be the same person in about ten years from now. You might think that you are done with children now, but as we all know too well, anything might happen in the future. A vasectomy might end up being a costly and painful regret later on.
If you do decide to expand your family later on, it will be up to your partner to reverse his vasectomy. And not every guy is on board with the idea. After all, his family jewels have already gone through enough! This is a decision that you want to thoroughly think through before the day of his scheduled surgery. You just never know when that baby fever might hit you again!
12 What Happens If Your Partner Changes His Mind
You could be the most confident, headstrong person in the world who knows what she wants, but when you are sharing your life with another person, you have to consider all of their thoughts, feelings and fears, too. After all, any kind of relationship takes two to tango.
You might find yourself in quite a pickle if your partner changes his mind about his vasectomy. And if that happens, then you might find yourself back at square one. Even though you think a vasectomy is the best decision for the two of you, he might not feel the same way. Before deciding on the surgery, communicate your feelings. Don’t hold anything back. Speak your truth and most importantly, listen to what your partner has to say. You want to find a compromise before moving forward with your future together.
11 He Might Lose His Libido
For some men, it might take several days, weeks or even months until he finds his grove back after his surgery. And believe it or not, for other men it might even take longer than that. In fact, many people will tell you that vasectomies have made some men lose their libido – and that’s not a good thing at all.
Think of it this way: a lot of men prefer not to mess around with their manhood. The last thing they want is for someone to poke or prod them down there. And it might take them a long time to get back to how they were feeling before. If you feel like you’ve lost your libido after having a vasectomy, definitely talk to a medical professional about it. This is definitely something you don’t want to ignore.
10 There Are Risks Of Infection
Here’s another thing that many people don’t know: there’s a good number of men who suffer from infections after their vasectomies. It’s called epididymitis and it’s an infection of inflammation that can either cause swelling of the testicles or pain during ejaculation. Your partner might even feel some pain during intercourse. It’s a rare complication but it’s also one that can manifest several years after your vasectomy.
According to the Austin Urology Institute, “This is a structure that sits on the testicle and transports sperm to the vas deferens. It is a common infection in men and is typically treated with a two week course of antibiotics. ... Epidymitis is not common after a vasectomy, but it can happen.” If you have any additional questions or conerns, definitely talk to your doctor.
9 He Can Have Low Testosterone Levels
While a lot of medical professionals dispute this claim, there are those that say, yes a vasectomy may reduce your testosterone level. Of course, there’s no real mechanism behind it but let’s face it: getting your tubes tired will effect you in one way or another, including your testosterone production.
But don’t worry, after a man gets his vasectomy, everything should remain the same. He should be able to have sex like he did before. He’ll ejaculate just like before and his erections should be the same. Your partner can work just as hard as he did before. There shouldn’t be any significant changes. And you shouldn’t lose or gain weight after your surgery, either. If you feel like you’ve had trouble performing in any of these departments, definitely talk to your doctor.
8 His Sack Will Be Bruised
Believe it or not, you might also see some bruising after your surgery. But don’t panic, as this is pretty common. A lot of men also experience some cramping (like women do during menstruation) and discomfort in their scrotum area. The bruising shouldn’t last more than about a week. The bruising usually occurs near the incisions.
According to Vasectomy.com, “minor swelling or bruising of the scrotum is also normal, but this should go away after two weeks. You can use ice packs to soothe the area, and reduce any swelling or discomfort.” Plus, you want to rest immediately after your surgery. The best you can do is go home and relax. Avoid any heavy lifting or strenuous activities for about a week. The more you relax now, the quicker you will heal.
7 Increased Risk In Prostate Cancer
There are studies that say vasectomies are linked to prostate cancer. And while some researchers have dismissed the idea, one ongoing study says that men who have had a vasectomy are at a higher risk for prostate cancer later in life, although the reasons for it are yet unclear. Many say it might be because of immunological changes or hormonal imbalances following the surgery, although researchers are still trying to pinpoint the exact cause..
According to the New York Times, “The researchers found no association between a vasectomy and low-grade cancers. But men who had had a vasectomy were about 20 percent more likely to develop lethal prostate cancer, compared with those who had not. The incidence was 19 in 1,000 cases, compared with 16 in 1,000, over the 24-year period.”
6 There's A Possibility For Dementia Later In Life
There are also studies that suggest men who have had vasectomies are at risk of developing dementia later in life. While it’s difficult to connect the two together, a lot of cases occur in men aged 50 or over. It’s a rare conditions, but one of the major signs and symptoms is loss of language skills and of course, lack of memory.
According to WebMD, one researcher says, “ theorized that vasectomy may raise the risk of the rare dementias by breaching the protective barrier between the bloodstream and the testes. When that barrier is broken, as occurs with vasectomy, sperm become exposed to the bloodstream. In response, many men who have had the surgery produce antisperm antibodies. These antibodies may affect the brain, causing damage which can lead to dementia.”
5 Surgical Complications Can Happen
In most cases, vasectomies are pretty quick out patient procedures. You’ll be in and out of there before you know it. But there are some cases in which some men might suffer from post-surgical complications or they might not realize their side effects until a week after their surgery. One major side effect is bleeding or a blood clot inside the scrotum.
According to Dr. Turek of the Turek Clinics he says, “Rarely (less than 1%), a small blood vessel may bleed into the scrotum and continue to bleed and form a clot of blood (hematoma). A small clot will be reabsorbed by the body with time, but a large one usually requires drainage through a surgical procedure. Hospitalization and a general anesthetic may be required to drain the blood clot.”
4 It’s Not One Hundred Percent Effective
After debating about it for weeks, going back and forth with your partner and finally deciding on your surgery, the last thing you want to hear is that your vasectomy won’t be 100 percent effective. In other words, there’s a chance that your partner might still get pregnant. So was it even worth it all in the first place?
The short answer is that a vasectomy is normally considered as the most effective form of birth control but it’s not effective right away. So you might want to hold your horses before hitting the sack. It will take about three months – or about 15 to 20 ejaculations – before you are in the clear. Until then, you and your partner will still need to use other forms of birth control until the remaining sperm are cleared.
3 He Risks Possible Impotence
Here’s something that happens quite often, yet no one really wants to talk about it: impotence. Yes, it happens, and no, it’s nothing to be ashamed of. And yes, it’s something you need to talk about, especially if you’ve just had a vasectomy.
While there have been cases of post-vasectomy erectile dysfunction, it doesn’t happen very often. But here’s what you need to know: according to Healthline, “a vasectomy doesn't directly cause impotence or affect your sexuality. The body's process for erections and climaxing is unrelated to the procedure.” But if you feel like it’s still a problem, definitely talk to your doctor. It’s something you definitely want to check out before it becomes a long-term problem. The problem might not be a physical one, but an emotional one instead.
2 A Vasectomy Can Reverse Itself
I once heard someone tell another guy that if they get a reserve vasectomy, then that could only mean that he’s blindly in love with his partner. Because it’s not a decision that a lot of men would make. And that’s because it’s not something a lot of people want to go through.
A vasectomy reversal reconnects the male reproductive tract. You also have a choice of two different procedures: a vasovasostomy (vas deferens to vas deferens connection) and vasoepididymostomy (epididymis to vas deferens connection). It’s also a six to 12 month process, so the results won’t kick in right away. And while severe testicular pain does occur, it’s rare, although there are several risks associated with a vasectomy reversal. Definitely consult your doctor or a medical professional if you have any questions or doubts about reversing your vasectomy.
1 The Big Snip
Plus, getting a vasectomy is something that a lot of men don’t want to broadcast to the world. It’s not the same as a pregnancy or a birth announcement. It’s a surgery that they want to keep to themselves.
Luckily, there are men that understand the pros and cons. One even said that he would rather “endure only one embarrassing, existential male crisis with just a doctor and maybe my wife present, over weekly trips to Walgreens, waiting in line with the neighborhood mutants while the teenage clerk scans my rubbers.” Point well taken, my friend. Plus, men can’t always rely on women to be the source of their birth control. Sometimes you have to take one for the team, too! Remember, it’s a big snip, but it’s only one snip.
Sources: DrTurekClinics.com, MayoClinic.com, Vasectomies.com, WebMD.com, CcaryMommy.com, MensHealth.com