Can a Vasectomy Reversal Cure Chronic Testicular Pain?
If it’s been more than a few months since you had a vasectomy and you’re experiencing testicular pain, swelling, tenderness or redness, you might be wondering if your symptoms could be related to your vasectomy… and if so, if vasectomy reversal could cure the condition. Well, there’s a short answer and a long answer.
The short answer is that yes, it’s possible: You could have post-vasectomy pain syndrome, or PVPS. It’s a chronic and sometimes debilitating genital pain condition that can occur up to several years after vasectomy. Most studies have found that PVPS occurs in less than 5% of the men who have had vasectomies. In other words, it’s pretty rare, but it does occur. It can take the form of a dull ache, sharp pain or throbbing discomfort. PVPS can be constant or it can occur only after sex or exertion. The treatment options depend on the pain severity, but when the pain is severe, a vasectomy reversal is one of the treatment options. Another involves operating on the spermatic cord nerve.
The longer answer is that testicular pain can be caused by a wide number of conditions. And although it’s natural to associate a condition (pain) with an event (surgery), many men develop testicular pain from other causes, which should be considered along with possible PVPS. Just to give you an idea, here are a few of the other conditions that can cause testicular pain:
- Kidney stones
- Varicoceles (enlarged veins in the scrotum)
- Urinary tract infections
- Drug side-effects
- Testicle injury or inflammation
- Nerve damage caused by diabetes
- Testicular tumor
- Bacterial or viral infection
- Groin hernia
- Fluid buildup in the scrotum or testicle
- Testicular cancer
Not only are there are a lot of possible causes here, but some of these conditions qualify as potential medical emergencies. Some can also lead to permanent testicle damage or worse. And many are much more common than PVPS.
This is why, if you’re experiencing testicular pain, you should see a healthcare professional — preferably an experienced urologist. He or she can diagnose your condition, usually by conduction a physical exam, blood or urine tests, or an imaging test such as an ultrasound. And if the pain is particularly bad or if you’re also experiencing nausea, vomiting or fever, then don’t wait: Call your doctor immediately or go to the nearest urgent care or emergency room.