Erectile Dysfunction After Vasectomy – Causes, Risks and Treatment

6 min read

Written by Aparna Hari

Aparna Hari

Erectile Dysfunction After Vasectomy

Many patients are concerned about erectile dysfunction after vasectomy or the inability to sustain an erection. But the good news is vasectomy does not lead to impotence in men. Men continue to have a healthy sexual life even after the procedure. The procedure does not alter the organs or processes required for erection.

However erectile dysfunction can happen after a vasectomy procedure, though the chances are rare. Underlying medical conditions and lifestyle habits are believed to contribute to this condition. So, why does ED happen after a vasectomy, how to deal with it, and are there any treatment options? 

In This Article

What is a Vasectomy?

What is vasectomy

Vasectomy is the most convenient and effective way of male contraception with less risk of complications. It involves a surgical procedure that blocks the sperm cells from the testes to the point of ejaculation.

The common concern related to this procedure is impotence or erectile dysfunction after vasectomy. According to the International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics (FIGO), some men reported improvement in their sex lives after vasectomy.

A vasectomy is a reliable birth control method. The procedure includes cutting the tube that carries sperm from the testes to the urethra. The sperm cells are produced in the testes and released from the urethra during ejaculation. Thus, it blocks the path of the sperm cells and minimizes the risk of pregnancy.

But, an important point to remember is that the birth control effects of vasectomy are not immediate. So, it is better to use other contraceptive methods to avoid pregnancy. Seek a doctor’s advice regarding when to stop it.

[Read : What Are The Different Contraception Methods?]

Causes of Erectile Dysfunction After Vasectomy

Vasectomy is an effective method to avoid unwanted pregnancy. It is rare to get impotent or have less chance of erectile dysfunction after Vasectomy. Vasectomy does not directly affect sexuality or cause erectile Dysfunction. But erectile Dysfunction is related to your mental health after Vasectomy. If you are in depression, anxiety, or stress, it can cause erectile dysfunction. Thus, there is no direct connection between the two.

You may also experience erectile dysfunction after vasectomy if you have the following health-related issues or behavior

  • Heart disease
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • High blood pressure
  • High cholesterol
  • Kidney disease
  • Drinking too much alcohol
  • Use of illicit drugs
  • Smoking
  • Obesity
  • Lack of exercise

If you have any of the above conditions or behavioral problems, inform your doctor. They will explain the reason for developing erectile dysfunction and suggest a diagnosis or treatment.

Also, let your doctor know if you take any medications like antidepressants, diuretics, chemotherapy medications, etc.
If you develop pain after the vasectomy, visit your doctor immediately. It may be due to sexual dysfunction.

[Read : Can Alcohol Cause Erectile Dysfunction?]

Risks Associated With Vasectomies And Vasectomy Reversal

Erectile Dysfunction after Vasectomy

Vasectomy is usually safe. Yet, there may be some risks as it is a medical procedure. A few things related to Vasectomy are bruises, infection, and temporary pain.

For infection and pain, you should call your doctor and take medicine. You may have the following symptoms after the vasectomy.

  • Temperature above 100 degrees Celsius.
  • Bleeding or pus from the area where there is a cut.
  • Internal bleeding may lead to bruising or swelling. Taking over-the-counter medicine and an ice pack can help. The pain usually goes away on its own. But it is better to take the doctor’s advice.
  • Severe pain and swelling in the scrotum or testes may happen. But it is mostly temporary.
  • Long-term pain hardly occurs. But if the pain persists, talk to your doctor for treatment.
  • Pregnancy may occur due to failed vasectomy.

Vasectomy reversal, on the other hand, is a procedure to undo the vasectomy. You can go for vasectomy reversal several years after your vasectomy. But it may not guarantee success in conceiving a child.

Though there are rare risks involved in vasectomy reversal, some of the risks involved are similar to vasectomy. They are:

1. Collection of Blood in the Scrotum and Swelling

Vasectomy reversal may lead to bleeding within the scrotum followed by swelling and excessive pain. It is better to take suggestions from your doctor before and after the surgery regarding any medications to avoid.

2. Infection in the Surgical Area

Though it is very uncommon, the risk of infection is associated with any type of surgery. So it may require proper treatment to cure it.

3. Severe Pain

It is very uncommon though there are chances of persistent pain after vasectomy reversal. Reach out to your doctor in such circumstances.

[Read : Pregnancy after Vasectomy]

How to Prevent ED From Occurring After Vasectomy?

Generally, vasectomy does not cause erectile dysfunction. It may happen due to low self-esteem or stress after the surgical procedure.

According to a 2014 study on Mental Illness, many people suffer from psychological issues after vasectomy. There is a need for proper counseling before undergoing vasectomy.

People with pre-existing psychological conditions and/or marital disharmony may develop psychological issues after the vasectomy. You should seek mental health advice on the same.

But if you feel some other conditions are causing erectile dysfunction (ED), you should talk to a doctor to know the underlying causes of ED. Those could be diabetes, heart disease, etc.

Unless you consult a doctor, you will not know if your health is at risk. For physical problems that are causing erectile dysfunction medicines like Viagra, Vardenafil, etc. will be effective. It may help to take out the stress after the vasectomy. But take the medications only with the consultation of a doctor.

When to Visit Your Doctor?

Doctor with ED patient

You should seek doctors’ advice if you wish to have a vasectomy to understand the benefits and risks involved in the process. If you have a history of psychological problems, a doctor will counsel you to prevent erectile dysfunction.

You should call your doctor immediately if you develop any infection, bleeding, or extreme pain after the vasectomy. The problem that may arise after the vasectomy includes the following:

Bleeding in the semen, scrotum, or wound

  • Fever
  • Infection around the cut
  • Intensifying pain
  • Severe swelling in the scrotum

It is natural to experience mild swelling after the vasectomy. But excess swelling needs doctors’ attention.

There may be other complications like post-vasectomy pain on ejaculation and pregnancy due to a failed vasectomy. You should visit a doctor for these problems as well.

It is also essential to visit your doctor after three months of vasectomy to test if there is any sperm in your semen that is responsible for the pregnancy.

A vasectomy is an effective birth control method for males. It allows freedom to have sex without worrying about unwanted pregnancy. But, before you decide to go for a vasectomy it is crucial to go through counselling sessions and understand the risks and benefits.

Some people experience erectile dysfunction after the procedure. The reason could be psychological, use of medications, health, or behavioral conditions. Vasectomy is not directly linked to erectile dysfunction.

Even after the vasectomy, you should take doctors’ advice for pain, bleeding, infection, or pregnancy occurring post the procedure.


1. Is ED Common After Vasectomy?

No, ED does not always occur after a vasectomy. This is a common concern for people undergoing vasectomy. But, there is no direct connection between vasectomy and erectile dysfunction.

2. What Are The Effects of Vasectomy?

The effects of vasectomy include bleeding or hematoma (blood clot) inside the scrotum, infection at the surgery site, bleeding in the semen, mild pain or discomfort, bruising of the scrotum, and swelling.

Read Also: How To Conceive When Husband Has Erectile Dysfunction?

Aparna Hari,MBA in Marketing,P.G. Diploma in Human Resource Management from IGNOU Bachelor of Sciences (Home Science) from Nagarjuna University

Her experience in impactful writing combined with her background in Home Sciences makes Aparna the perfect candidate for content writing in the pregnancy and parenting niche.Read more.

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