Sedation for Vasectomy

We want you to feel as comfortable and confident in your decision as possible.

We get it, throughout your life you’ve had enough uncomfortable “knocks” down there to make you think twice about scheduling an elective procedure, even if it’s one of the most effective forms of birth control.

Dr. Scott Matson takes great pride in providing the best experience for all his patients, especially those with concerns about pain. Our office was one of the first in Connecticut to implement a no-needle, no-scalpel vasectomy, improving patient comfort and decreasing recovery times.

The truth is, everyone gets a bit nervous when they lay down in a medical office for a procedure. For patients who get anxious when it’s go-time, we now offer a self-administered sedative system called Nitronox. Similar to the “laughing gas” used for decades in dental offices, Nitrous Oxide continues to be a great option for mild sedation.

If you’re stressing about pain or tension during your vasectomy our Nitronox system may be the fast-acting helper that gives you instant relief and wears off within minutes following treatment.

Nitrous Oxide Vasectomy Q & A

What is nitrous oxide? 

Nitrous oxide is a safe and effective anxiolytic and analgesic agent that is mixed with oxygen. Nitrous oxide can be used during procedures and treatments to help make you feel more comfortable.

How does the nitrous and oxygen analgesia system work? 

The nitrous oxide and oxygen analgesia system delivers a safe mixture of nitrous oxide and oxygen which is inhaled and exhaled through a mouthpiece (think Hookah pipe), providing you control of your experience through self-administration. Your doctor will ask you to breathe normally through your mouth, and within a few minutes, you should start to feel the effects of the gas mixture. The effects of nitrous oxide wear off within 5-10 minutes after the last inhalation of the N2O/O2 mixture.

Will this put you to sleep? 

No. The provided nitrous oxide and oxygen ratio is not strong enough to provide anesthesia and put you to sleep. You will be able to hear and respond to any requests or directions the doctor and staff may have.

How will I feel while using nitrous oxide? 

Most patients will say it makes them feel relaxed, and their arms and legs feel light. Some patients feel tingling in their extremities and report feeling like they are floating, and/or sinking. Nitrous oxide is often called “laughing gas,” so some patients will feel giggly when the gas mixture takes effect. Also, your voice may temporarily change during the administration of nitrous oxide since vocal cords are affected by nitrous oxide.

How fast does nitrous oxide take effect and last? 

For most patients, the calming, relaxing effects of nitrous oxide will be felt within a minute or two or after a couple of deep inhalation/exhalation cycles. Effects may vary from patient to patient. Once you stop inhaling the gas mixture, you will start feeling “normal” within 5-10 minutes.

Can I drive home after using nitrous oxide?  
For your safety, we suggest ALL vasectomy patients have a responsible party drive them home. The effects of nitrous oxide and oxygen are completely out of your system within a few minutes. Patients can safely go home with their ride in minutes after using the Nitronox system, assuming all other discharge criteria have been met.
Does nitrous oxide eliminate pain? 

Nitrous oxide does not completely eliminate pain. This is important to understand and to set your expectations. Our no-needle anesthesia is used to numb locally and Nitrous oxide is intended to take the edge off, help you relax, make the numbing part of the procedure more comfortable, and reduce anxiety.

Is nitrous oxide safe? 
Nitrous oxide has been used for over 100 years and has a long-standing safety record. When the Nitronox device is used, you are awake (conscious), responsive, and breathing normally on your own. It’s so safe, a similar system is currently used in hospitals for women giving birth.

What are the typical side effects that one might feel? 

Side effects are usually non-existent or minimal. With a self-administered protocol, you are in total control which helps to minimize side effects. Side effects that can occur in some patients are dizziness and nausea. If you do not like how you are feeling, stop inhaling the N2O/O2 mixture and breathe room air. This should quickly reverse any negative effects.

What are the benefits and advantages? 

Nitrous oxide is a popular way to calm tension, reduce pain and eliminate anxiety during office procedures for the following reasons:

  • Provides comfort and reduces anxiety
  • Self-administered
  • Fast-acting
  • Quick recovery
  • Alternative for oral medications
  • Fast-acting for almost instantaneous relief
  • Very few (if any) side effects
  • Patients remain awake and fully responsive to questions and verbal cues
  • Patients feel in control throughout the procedure
  • Suitable for nearly all patients
Will my insurance cover Nitronox? 

While nitrous oxide has been used during medical procedures for decades, the use of nitrous oxide and oxygen analgesia systems is not currently covered by insurance. It is considered an add-on service for vasectomy procedures and can be discussed with Dr. Matson during your initial consultation.

How much does it cost? 

The cost of using a nitrous oxide and oxygen analgesia system is billed in addition to our normal procedure costs. The current charge is $200.

What to expect during a Mild Sedation Vasectomy

Our Nitronox system administers a safe gas mixture through a mouthpiece that the patient holds in their hand…similar to a Hookah pipe. Patients are encouraged to breathe normally, allowing the system to regulate the amount of Nitrous Oxide that enters their system.

Within minutes the effects can be felt. You will begin to feel relaxed, warm, and comfortable. Your arms and legs may tingle, feel heavier or lighter than normal, and you may feel like you are in a dream-like state of mind.

Throughout the procedure, you will remain awake and will be able to hear and respond to all questions and instructions from Dr. Matson and our medical team. If you begin to feel dizzy, tired, or uncomfortable you can let our staff know and the Nitronox system will be adjusted immediately to address your needs.

A vasectomy procedure at The Vasectomy Center of CT is quick, often completed within 10-15 minutes. As Dr. Matson finishes treatment the Nitronox system will replace nitrous with pure oxygen and the effects will quickly begin to wear off. Within minutes you will feel like your normal self, without any fogginess, loss of memory, or lightheadedness.

As with all of our vasectomy procedures, we require that patients are driven home by a care provider or ride service.

"Had a pain-free vasectomy from Dr. Matson. The procedure took 15 minutes and I felt like myself the next day. Couldn't be happier and I recommend him without hesitation."

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Our Promise:

The Vasectomy and Male Infertility Center of Connecticut is a practice devoted to male reproductive needs. Whether you are considering a vasectomy or want a vasectomy reversal, Dr. Scott Matson and his team will treat you as a person, not a time slot. Your comfort, confidence and efficient care are our top priorities.

Scott Matson MD is Certified by the American Board of Urology.

To provide our patients with the highest level of protection and care we have adjusted our consultation and procedure process, including the implementation of Telemedicine and COVID-specific policies. Learn More

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