How Vasectomies Work

The Vasectomy Is Over - Now What?

After the procedure, you'll need a period of rest for recovery.
After the procedure, you'll need a period of rest for recovery.
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Immediately after your vasectomy, you will need to rest for a short while until you're stable and lucid again, and then you may go home. That day, your scrotum will be quite numb, and you can expect some soreness, swelling, discharge or bruising, possibly lasting up to several days. Rest and ice packs will help to reduce any discomfort that you feel.

Some men are able to return to work the following day, with most men returning to work after several days of healing [source: National Library of Medicine]. You will need to avoid heavy lifting for several days until all swelling and pain cease. Make sure to follow your doctor's recommendations about wearing your jock strap or tight briefs to support your scrotum. Most likely, you can resume sex and your normal routine within a week after the surgery [source: Zieve et al.].

You may wonder, now that your vasectomy is complete, whether you can immediately begin to enjoy sex without worrying about an unwanted pregnancy. For several months after your vasectomy, you will still be fertile. For two to three months, sperm will still be circulating in your reproductive system, allowing you to impregnate your partner. To confirm that your semen is clear of all sperm, you will need to visit your doctor and provide a sperm sample several months after your vasectomy. Some doctors may even recommend that you return several times to confirm that the vasectomy was a success. As we will discuss later, one of the most important aspects contributing to your vasectomy success is avoiding unprotected sex during these first few months after surgery. Most pregnancies that occur after vasectomy occur within the first six months after surgery. For this reason, abstinence or a backup method of birth control must be used to prevent pregnancy.