This case involves a patient who underwent an elective vasectomy. He started to experience pain for 3 days after his procedure and went to see the surgeon. The surgeon told him the pain should subside, and in the meantime instructed him to take pain medications. He had continuous pain for the next 2 months for which he repeatedly went to his doctor. He was later found to have developed chronic pain syndrome. The American Academy for Urology guideline states that prior to this procedure, the operating physician must formally communicate that chronic pain syndrome is a potential outcome of this procedure. In this instance, the patient was not informed, and suffers ongoing distress and severe discomfort.
Question(s) For Expert Witness
- 1. Do you perform vasectomies?
- 2. Are you familiar with the guidelines that require a physician to inform a patient that chronic pain syndrome is a potential outcome of this procedure?
Expert Witness Response E-024892
I perform 250 vasectomies per year. As a reviewer of the AUA Guidelines on vasectomy, I am well aware of the warnings regarding chronic pain syndrome that should be given to patients prior to performing a vasectomy.
Expert Witness Response E-024907
Post vasectomy syndrome is a well recognized complication. All patients should be made aware of this risk. I am familiar with the guidelines that require physicians to inform a patient that chronic pain syndrome is a potential complication of vasectomies.