By Dr. Onisuru Okotie
Ready for some basketball this March?
We’ve got your assist: Vas Madness.
Sports fans have a way of reengineering life to accommodate their love for the game, and Vas Madness is among the most creative phenomena to that end. The event was founded as a solution to two needs: undergoing a vasectomy (male sterilization) and scheduling it so you can heal while watching several days of the NCAA tournament, or the Final Four.
But schedule soon: More than half a million men opt to undergo a vasectomy annually, and in March, that number climbs – by as much as 50%, ESPN has reported.
CAN I REALLY ENJOY THE GAME AFTER A VASECTOMY?
You decide: A vasectomy is an out-patient procedure that takes 15 to 30 minutes. Patients return home the same day and can expect some achiness in their scrotum for a week or so, but it shouldn’t sideline them from the games. In fact, your urologist will give you an official pass to sit on your couch for the first 48 hours.
Indeed, men are advised to avoid heavy lifting and exercise for up to five days after the surgery. That’s a pretty good setup for relaxing on the couch with a bag of frozen peas, waiting for the tip-off.
So yes, if you’re thinking about a vasectomy but could never find the “right” time to schedule the appointment, this may be it – perhaps ahead of Selection Sunday on March 12 and the First Four games in Dayton, Ohio, on March 14 and 15.
WHAT TO KNOW BEFORE SCHEDULING YOUR VASECTOMY
Like preparing your bracket, you should plan ahead for the vasectomy. Here are some helpful tips:
- Relax. It’s not as bad as you think. The Urology Group Central Indiana offers nitrous oxide (often called laughing gas) or Valium, depending on the office location, to help you relax during the procedure.
- There will likely be stitches. A vasectomy requires cutting and sealing each of the vas deferens, the tubes that carry sperm from the testicles, so one or two stitches may be needed. In some cases, a no-scalpel technique can be used. Ask your physician
- You’ll need to lie down afterward. Doctor’s orders are that you rest on your back, for six to eight hours after surgery. So, you might not want to schedule your vasectomy on the morning of game day.
- Expect a little seepage. Small, bloody discharges from the incision are normal for five or so days after a vasectomy. Keep some clean, warm clothes within reach, near to (but not touching) the snacks.
- It’s kinda, sorta permanent. While vasectomies are considered permanent method of birth control, a reversal surgery, called a vasovasostomy, can be performed. Results are not guaranteed.
- Your testosterone is safe. Hormone levels do not change after a vasectomy, so your voice will remain strong when you shout, “Go, Hoosiers! Go Boilermakers!” (or whoever you’re rooting for).
- Your sex drive is safe, too. Sexual sensations will remain unchanged, as well. You will still ejaculate, and your semen will look the same. Some men even report enjoying sex more because the pressure is off, but please wait at least five days after the vasectomy before finding out for yourself.
- Heads-up – your sperm will linger. Viable sperm will remain behind, and it will take 15 to 20 ejaculations to clear them out of your body and ensure complete sterility. Your physician must confirm this two or three months after the procedure.
- You’ll still need protection from STDs. Because sperm has nothing to do with sexually transmitted diseases, you will still want protection if this is a concern.
VAS MADNESS, YOUR EXCUSE TO WATCH THE GAMES
Lastly, if you’re thinking about getting a vasectomy and want to be part of the Vas Madness movement, we advise you schedule it soon – before you start strategizing your brackets. This will ensure you get a “seat” in front of the games that matter most to you.
Then plan your Vas Madness celebration. Decorate your place with “Vas Break” signs and load up on frozen peas to sooth your sore spot. Have a virtual party with other Vas Madness fans. And heck, share your images. We’d love to celebrate with you.
The Urology Group Central Indiana is happy to answer your questions about vasectomies. Contact any of our offices to schedule your appointment.