Texas surgeon uses electric truck battery to perform vasectomy on patient during power outage
Dr Christopher Yang recalled how his patient had taken time off work for the procedure and wasn't in a position to reschedule. One staffer at North Austin Urology suggested that the power from the surgeon's Rivian R1T pickup truck could probably generate enough electricity to power the electrocautery tool needed for the relatively simple procedure. Dr Yang agreed, and after clearing the idea with the patient, the doctor pulled an extension cord from the parking lot into the clinic and plugged it into the instrument.
"When talking to the patient, we mentioned that we could just reschedule the procedure itself, or, if he was up for it, we could do the vasectomy using power from the truck. And he had a good laugh as well, and we agreed,” Yang told WGLT on Friday, September 9. The doctor was initially worried the electricity wouldn't be enough to power his device for the full surgery and kept a backup handheld cautery device within reach just in case. However, the procedure -- which usually takes about 15-20 minutes -- was successfully powered by the truck. "I performed what is likely the world's first Rivian-powered vasectomy today," Yang tweeted to his followers. "Power in clinic went out, patient didn't want to reschedule cause he already had time off. Electrocautery was normal, procedure went great."
I performed what is likely the world's first @Rivian powered vasectomy today. Power in clinic went out, patient didn't want to reschedule cause he already had time off. Electrocautery was normal, procedure went great! #rivianstories #rivian pic.twitter.com/VLDg91r37d— Christopher Yang (@ChrisYangMD) September 1, 2022
Rivian R1T trucks are widely popular and have extensive waitlists in most cities. They come with a starting price tag of $69,000. According to Yang, the truck's battery even powered a small fan in the room, since the AC was out due to the power outage. "I’m not sure that this (vasectomy) should be planned use of the truck, but it’s definitely great to have that as a backup just in case," Dr Yang noted. When the surgeon told the patient's family about his ingenuity, they were amused. "We all had a good laugh together," he said.
MEAWW previously reported a steep rise in vasectomies after the overturning of Roe v Wade by the Supreme Court. One urologist based in Florida, popularly known as the 'Vasectomy King', said men -- even some under the age of 30 -- were rushing to get the procedure in the aftermath of the landmark decision. "Many of the guys are saying that they have been thinking about a vasectomy for a while, and the Roe v. Wade decision was just that final factor that tipped them over the edge and made them submit the online registration," Dr Doug Stein told The Washington Post, adding that he had been receiving more than 12 requests for the procedure a day since the controversial ruling.
Abortion was automatically outlawed in 18 states following the June 24 decision. Senator Lindsey Graham introduced legislation on Tuesday, September 13, to ban abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy nationwide. The South Carolina Republican's bill provides exceptions when the pregnancy threatens the life of the mother and for rape, but only if the rape victim has sought medical treatment and counseling for trauma at least 48 hours prior to the abortion.