Sex post surgery - When is the right time?

  • By Dr. T Deepa Porkodi

After every surgery doctors advice the patients to refrain from sex. At times, this factor plays a great deal on the patient’s mind when he opts for surgery.

Indeed, this is the most frequently asked question to a surgeon post any surgery.

So what is the big deal about having sex after surgery?

Surgeries are procedures where your body or part of your body is cut open and repaired. It is a major procedure that your body goes through and after such a harrowing experience the body requires time to heal and come back to its best.

Exerting unnecessary force upon it at this time, in the form of sex, would only weaken the body more and make healing last longer.

When a patient asks, "Doctor when can I have sex after surgery?", there is no specific answer. This is due to two main reasons. Firstly everybody is different and their bodies heal as per their fitness levels. Secondly, healing also depends on the type of surgery.

A simple surgery may not require you to refrain from sex for a long time. In fact for most surgeries, doctors let you be the judge. Once you feel you are fit enough and can withstand exertion, you can go ahead say doctors. Let the pain be your guide, they say. You may feel the pain coming back while having sex, this is your body's way of telling you to let it rest some more.
In complicated surgeries, like an open heart surgery for example, being fit is not enough. You have to bear in mind that the extra exertion might not be good for your heart.

You may also need to bring variations in your routine way of having sex. For example, you may consider a different position in case your regular position puts a strain on the operated area.

Surgeries on the genital and reproductive organs can have certain effects on sexual activity. Vaginal surgeries can make the vagina dry so you may have to use a lubricant.

Surgeries on the prostate may make it difficult to maintain an erection so you will have to consult your doctor about medications for the same.

Surgeries on the reproductive organs may also affect the hormone levels affecting your sex drive. You may feel an aversion to sex or have an increased appetite for it post surgery.

No matter what surgery you are undergoing, talk freely to your surgeon and voice all your concerns regarding sex. Also make sure your partner sits in with you during the session.