7 Tips to Prepare for Vasectomy

Doctor William C Lloyd Healthgrades Medical Reviewer
Medically Reviewed By William C. Lloyd III, MD, FACS
Written By Sarah Lewis, PharmD on May 1, 2020
  • female doctor comforting male patient
    Vasectomy Preparation
    Like many procedures, the anticipation is often more stressful than the actual vasectomy procedure. Once you’ve decided to move forward and scheduled it, your urologist will give you instructions for vasectomy preparation. Following these vasectomy instructions carefully will help make your procedure and recovery go smoothly. Here are some tips and steps to take before vasectomy.
  • Close-up of anticoagulant medication warfarin for dvt blood clot
    1. Don’t take blood thinners unless your doctor tells you to use them.
    Blood thinners increase the risk of bleeding complications during vasectomy recovery. Most of the time, doctors will ask you to stop any medicines that interfere with blood clotting for about a week before vasectomy. Several medicines fall in this category. It includes prescription medicines, such as clopidogrel (Plavix) and warfarin (Coumadin), and newer anticoagulants, such as apixaban (Eliquis) and rivaroxaban (Xarelto). It also includes aspirin and NSAIDs (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs), such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) and naproxen (Aleve). Acetaminophen (Tylenol) won’t affect bleeding or increase bleeding risk.
  • man's hand cleaning a razor in the bathroom sink
    2. Shave a day or two before your vasectomy.
    Your doctor’s instructions will likely include clipping or shaving your pubic hair. You don’t need to remove all hair in the pubic area. Generally, doctors will ask you to shave any hair on the underside of your penis and the hair on the front of your scrotum. It will keep hair out of the surgical area and allow your doctor to see the area better. Don’t use an electric shaver in this sensitive area. A disposable single-blade razor in the shower will do the trick. Sometimes, doctors prefer that you wait and have the area shaved in the office just before the procedure.
  • man washing hair in shower
    3. Shower the day of your vasectomy.
    You need to thoroughly wash your genital area with soap and water before your vasectomy. It will help decrease the risk of infection in the incision. Your doctor may ask you to do this the night before and the day of your vasectomy. Ideally, you should shower or bathe right before you leave for the procedure.
  • unidentifiable man in comfortable clothes resting on couch
    4. Wear the right clothes.
    Generally, you don’t have to get completely undressed for a vasectomy. But you’ll want to be comfortable, so wear clothes that suit you. Keep in mind, the room will be warm. The high temperature helps relax the scrotum to make the procedure easier. If you tend to get hot, wear a t-shirt or a layer you can remove. Also, remember to bring a clean athletic supporter or compression shorts for afterwards. Supporting the scrotum will help reduce swelling and improve comfort.
  • Close-up of healthy meal with salmon, multi-grain bagel and frisse lettuce
    5. Eat lightly.
    Vasectomy involves local anesthesia, not general anesthesia so there’s no need to fast beforehand. And having a completely empty stomach probably isn’t a good idea anyway. But having heavy food sitting in your stomach might cause problems. Strike a balance by having something to eat before the procedure, but keep it on the light side. It’s also okay to drink fluids the day of your procedure.
  • closeup of wireless earbuds with smartphone on table
    6. Bring your mobile device.
    For most procedures, you need to leave personal belongings behind. But many doctors encourage men to bring their mobile devices and earbuds to a vasectomy. You can listen to music, concentrate on a podcast, or play games. It can help occupy your mind and ease some stress and anxiety.
  • valium pill bottle and medical prescription
    7. Take your pre-op medicines.
    Most men prefer some help when it comes to easing the anxiety many feel about vasectomy. Doctors generally prescribe an anti-anxiety drug you can take 30 minutes before the procedure. This gives it enough time to take effect before you go into the procedure room. It also means you’ll need to arrange a ride to the procedure and home again. Even if you don’t use an anti-anxiety medicine, it’s best to arrange transportation. Driving home afterwards will put pressure on the area and cause discomfort.
7 Tips to Prepare for Vasectomy
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Last Review Date: 2020 Apr 29
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