How To: Get A Vasectomy


Sam Wilkinson

According to a faithful reader, I'm Ordinary Times's "least thoughtful writer." So I've got that going for me, which is nice.

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24 Responses

  1. Avatar rexknobus says:

    full disclosure follows:

    Date: September 22, 1977 – had mine and have never had a single regret. (YMMV depending on how you feel about continuing your genetic heritage.)

    Complications: None. Ever. Except that I was a surgical orderly for a few years and had assisted my doctor on quite a few of these and so, despite there being no discomfort or any pain, I knew precisely what he was doing at any given moment. Which I wasn’t wild about.

    Most interesting fact: The surgeon that did mine, did his own. Yes, you read that right.Report

  2. Avatar Chris says:


  3. Avatar Burt Likko says:

    Many condolences that your initiation into Ordo ex Ovis Abscisa was not smooth.

    For me, the sensation of post-operative swelling was the enduring memory. They felt like they were the size of cantaloupes, for days. The swelling wasn’t nearly that bad, of course; it only felt that way. I was walking slow for quite some time.

    That, and nearly fainting when the doctor waved his hands about while speaking with my wife, permitting me a view of my recently-severed and strangely-gray vas deferens and my blood still on it. Felt ashamed at that: ridiculous, perhaps.

    Actually, the mind and the heart conspire to gloss over the worst of it. As I sit here now, what I remember most intensely is my wife sitting next to me and holding my hand during the procedure.

    So yeah, I recommend getting one, if you’re ready to become Darwin’s very happy cat.Report

  4. Avatar North says:

    I also don’t see what anyone could complain about. At three kids you’ve already fulfilled even the social conservatives general parameters for your obligation to society.Report

  5. Avatar J@m3z Aitch says:

    Welcome to the club (unlike Burt, I’m not a lawyer, so I’ve got no Latin).

    For me it went very smoothly, except for one error of my own. So please allow me to add this bit of advice. Do not skip the frozen peas down your pants the first 24 hours, even if there’s no initial swelling or pain. You. Will. Regret. It. (Trust me, I’m an expert.)Report

  6. Wonderful piece.

    Quick question — you have two Step Fives, the second of which is “Six.” I assume this wasn’t what you intended?Report

  7. Avatar gene says:

    huzzah! mine was fine. as an RN i’ve worked with the urologist who did mine. we shot the breeze the whole time as if we were having coffee. glad to hear you took the steps necessary. too many men won’t, thus ‘forcing’ their wives/partners into the more invasive, higher risk procedure.
    high five.

  8. Avatar Michael Cain says:

    Welcome to the club. Mine was done at the Kaiser clinic, not even a hospital trip. No complications. No particular discomfort, although the bruising looked like they ought to hurt a lot. My wife said that the weirdest thing for her was knowing that a female doctor and female nurse were going to be messing about down there.Report

    • Avatar Sam Wilkinson in reply to Michael Cain says:

      I think one fear we might have as men is our body’s occasionally inappropriate physiological interest in sexual activity, but I can assure you that the body knows enough to stand down on occasions such as this.Report

  9. Avatar Mike Schilling says:

    I also had a vasectomy shortly after the birth of our youngest child, and I must say that knowing we wouldn’t have any more has made a vas deferens.Report

  10. Avatar jeff says:

    I have a somewhat related story about the you-must-want-to-make-children attitude of some medical professionals, and maybe about health care costs in general.

    I had testicular cancer three years ago. I go in, get left testicle removed, OK. When I go in for first checkup a month or so later, the oncologist and her assistant say to me, “would you like to get sperm frozen, in case something happens to the other testicle? It’s covered by insurance”.

    I said “no thanks, I’m good”.

    Well, you should have seen the look on their face. They were aghast. They asked again, noting insurance covered it, I said no.

    They then grabbed bullhorns out of the desk and blasted me, “HELLO!!!! IT’S COVERED BY INSURANCE. YOU CAN GET THIS DONE AND INSURANCE PAYS. INSURANCE PAYS. ALSO, INSURANCE”.

    OK, I made up the bullhorn part, but still, I suspect I was the first person to ever refuse this insurance-covered sperm storage. Maybe it’s even more general – maybe I was the first person to turn down *any* insured procedure.

    And now, three years after that, what am I doing? Considering a vacectomy.Report

  11. Avatar Fish says:

    Congratulations on all counts!

    I was in my urologist’s office two weeks after we learned that we were pregnant with #2. He was an older doctor and he knew what he was doing. I experienced no pain before or after (aside from a bit of pressure during in which I was convinced that he was attempting to just pull both vas defrens s s s out of my body, and a brief moment on day 2 when I felt good enough to pick something heavier than a coffee cup up. Oops!).

    Also re: Step 5: My urologist prescribed me Valium (just two) to be taken the morning of the procedure. I was so relaxed I probably couldn’t have spelled “anxiety.”

    My only complaint about the whole ordeal? I was required to get my wife’s signature on a “consent” form which explained what I was doing and ensuring that she knew it. Something something reproductive rights something something.Report