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Post Vasectomy Pain Syndrome (PVPS)

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Following a vasectomy procedure, a small number of men experience a chronic pain known as Post Vasectomy Pain Syndrome (PVPS). Though the definition of Post Vasectomy Pain and its treatment is not straight forward, its incidence is well recognized. Typically the pain is reported as an aching discomfort in the testicles that is made worse by intercourse. It can begin immediately after the vasectomy or many months or even years after the vasectomy.
The frequency of this problem varies amongst vasectomy doctors and studies. Some studies report the frequency of some type of lingering discomfort to be as high as one third (1/3) of men following vasectomy. Other studies report that the frequency of post vasectomy pain is one case in thousands.
Due to the wide variation in the frequency of cases amongst vasectomy doctors, an important answer to seek from your doctor ,is an accurate account of the risks of post vasectomy pain syndrome.
Remember, getting a second or third opinion from different practitioners with an expertise in treating post vasectomy pain is always advisable.

Here are some investigations that may help sort out the cause of post vasectomy pain:

a) a careful physical examination of the scrotal contents by a qualified physician.
b) scrotal ultrasound
c) semen culture and sensitivity and gram stain
d) anti-sperm antibodies
e) scrotal exploration
f) probing of the testicular end of the vas.
g) a careful psychological history to rule out depression.
h) Cystoscopy scoping the urethra with observation of the prostate gland and bladder.

» Possible Causes and Treatments - Post Vasectomy Pain Syndrome (PVPS)

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Our appreciation to Dr. Neil Pollock who contributed this article on Post Vasectomy Pain Syndrome. Dr. Pollock performs vasectomies in Vancouver, Canada and has a special interest in the diagnosis and treatment of post vasectomy pain syndrome. For more information on the PVPS, you are invited to contact him.

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